Russell Crowe Accepts Play Date

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On Monday, it was reported that Universal was trying to sign Russell Crowe to replace Brad Pitt in Stay of Play, and now he is in final negotiations for the political thriller.

Pitt pulled out of the movie citing script concerns that made him uneasy about toplining the picture, says The Hollywood Reporter. That brought him to loggerheads with the studio, which was adamant about going ahead with the script they had. Even meetings with the movie’s director, Kevin Macdonald, proved fruitless.

Macdonald (The Last King of Scotland) spent the weekend in Australia wooing Crowe, who had to see if “Play” could fit into his schedule; Crowe is scheduled to shoot Universal’s Nottingham, the Ridley Scott-directed reimagining of the Robin Hood story.

In Stay of Play, an adaptation of a British miniseries, Crowe will star alongside Edward Norton, Helen Mirren, Rachel McAdams, Jason Bateman and Robin Wright Penn. He will play a political consultant-turned-journalist who heads a newspaper’s murder investigation involving a fast-rising politician (Norton).

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