Travolta–who had been cast as oil tycoon villain J.R. Ewing in the film adaptation of the 1980s TV soap–was “let go about two weeks ago,” according to reports.
A source tells the New York Post‘s gossip column PageSix, “John was given a nice seven-figure ‘gift’ to go away quietly. He also got five family members roles in the movie, and they aren’t going to be in it now, either.”
The pal says, “He is not doing the movie. They’ve gone in a different direction than was originally intended. I don’t know about any ‘gift,’ and I don’t think the family-member thing is correct.”
Travolta is not the only star to have been allegedly dropped from the project. The first major upheaval occurred last year when Shirley MacLaine, who was to play Miss Ellie, Luke Wilson (Bobby Ewing) and Jennifer Lopez (Sue Ellen) were dropped from the cast. Meg Ryan and Matthew McConaughey‘s names were then brought up, but neither was signed.
Director Robert Luketic was also rumored to have been let go in favor of Bend It Like Beckham filmmaker Gurinder Chadha, and the budget was downsized from an original $65 million to “something way less,” according to sources.
A spokesperson for 20th Century Fox declined to comment.
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