General News

ROLE CALL: 'Stuart Little' Lives

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Dec 31, 1899 | 7:00pm EST

Geena Davis has committed to another pet project, signing on for Columbia Pictures' next mousecapade, "Stuart Little 2."

Daily Variety says the sequel is planned for a Christmas 2001 release. "Stuart Little," a surprise hit and a big cheese at the holiday box office, has pulled in more than $136 million.

Stuart Little There's no word yet on the status of original "Little" director Rob Minkoff or co-stars Hugh Laurie, Jonathan Lipnicki and "Stuart's" voice, Michael J. Fox.

"Ghost" writer Bruce Joel Rubin will script the story. Greg Brooker and "Sixth Sense" director M. Night Shyamalan wrote the original screenplay.

Although the Christmas 2001 date might seem wishful given the picture's mix of live action and animatronics, insiders report that the crew doesn't have to scamper because much of the needed critter technology already exists.

FELINE FOLLIES: The cat's in the bag for Heather Graham, set to co-star in Miramax's furry adventure "When the Cat's Away." Brad Anderson ("Next Stop Wonderland") will direct the remake of the 1996 French feature "Chacun Cherche son Chat." The film begins shooting in New York this summer.

"Cat's Away" tells the story of a woman who goes on vacation and leaves her kitty with the neighborhood's pet baby sitter. When she returns, she discovers that her cat has skipped out on the sitter. The search for her purrfect friend brings the woman into contact with a cast of colorful characters.

THE SHRINK: When Mel Gibson has women problems, he turns (at least on film) to Bette Midler. The Hollywood Reporter says she's the one in final negotiations to play Gibson's shrink in Paramount Pictures' "What Women Want." The film, co-starring Helen Hunt, involves a chauvinist (Gibson) who acquires the ability to hear women's thoughts after an accident.

TIED UP IN 'TRAFFIC': Kevin Costner might speed ahead of Harrison Ford for a role in Steven Soderbergh's "Traffic." According to The Hollywood Reporter, Costner's a lead candidate to play a district court judge turned U.S. drug czar, along with actors Al Pacino and Tommy Lee Jones.

"Traffic's" a joint arthouse project for Fox Searchlight and Initial Entertainment Group. Since IEG acquired the international rights based on Ford's involvement, the group might or might not stay in the fast lane. Insiders say the race is too early to call.

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