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Wild, Wild West The latest Elmore Leonard novel to be adapted, The Big Bounce, has little in common with predecessors Out of Sight and Get Shorty. In fact, says producer Jorge Saralegui (Showtime), it’s not even very good. In the 1969 novel, Leonard’s first attempt at crime stories, ”he hadn’t found his voice,” says Saralegui, who asserts that scriptwriter Sebastian Gutierrez (Judas Kiss) has infused the script with the Leonard voice we’ve come to know and love. A romp about a drifter who meets his cunning match, the film is ”fun and sexy,” says Saralegui, who has a deal at Warner Bros. Casting is still a question, but ”it could be anybody from Brad Pitt to Mark Wahlberg.” Saralegui is also fast-tracking the thriller In the Lake, about a husband’s revenge on his unfaithful wife. Jon Amiel (Entrapment) is set to direct when he completes The Core, and Saralegui is hoping to snag Denzel Washington to star.

Carrey On In the wake of The Majestic‘s blah box office, Jim Carrey’s chucking the mainstream with his upcoming project, The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Scripted by Charlie Kaufman, who wrote the Uberwacky Being John Malkovich and Human Nature (see review on page 47), Mind is predictably out there: Carrey plays a man whose girlfriend has had surgery to erase memories of her ex-lover. ”You see their relationship being played out from the bad ending to the sweet beginning,” says Kaufman. Don’t look for a sweetheart of an actress to costar; says Kaufman: ”The woman is not particularly nice.”

Furthermore Panic Room‘s Jodie Foster is staying calm about directing Flora Plum, a drama about carnies that was derailed in the fall of 2000 when star Russell Crowe injured his shoulder prepping for the role. ”It will happen,” says Foster. ”It’s fully financed, and I want to direct it.” But, she adds, ”It won’t happen with Russell.”

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