Plus Jim Caviezel's next role, "Hannibal" and more news from Hollywood

By Rebecca Ascher-Walsh
Updated May 12, 2000 at 04:00 AM EDT

WISDOM OF PEARL We’ll admit that number crunching is not our forte, but you’d think that $130 million-plus would be enough to go around. Still, Jerry Bruckheimer, who’s producing Disney’s Pearl Harbor, isn’t coughing up the dough to pay his actors their usual rate: Ben Affleck, who can ask for $6 million, is only getting $250,000 plus some back end, and lesser-knowns Kate Beckinsale and William Lee Scott are fetching a mere $50,000 each. ”Every nickel’s going into making the movie,” Bruckheimer says, ”between the visual effects—which ILM is doing—the actual physical effects, and all the stunts.” Plus, there’s the cost of ridding Hawaii of the flotsam Pearl Harbor‘s explosions are leaving in their wake. ”We have a cleaning crew that goes right behind us,” he adds. ”With quite a few people on it.”

One person not lucky enough to be on board—as a star or a cleaner—is Frequency‘s Jim Caviezel. Though the actor had committed for a Harbor tour, he was relieved of duty when Affleck signed on. Since the guy had also been up for the lead in Billy Bob Thornton‘s All the Pretty Horses until Affleck buddy Matt Damon expressed interest, Caviezel jokes that the pair ”had a conspiracy against me this year.” Nevertheless, the actor is gainfully employed: He’s finishing up Pay It Forward, in which he plays a heroin addict opposite Kevin Spacey and Helen Hunt, and has begun rehearsals for Angel Eyes, a drama costarring Jennifer Lopez (he replaced Aaron Eckhart). He’ll soon head to Ireland, where he’ll star in The Count of Monte Cristo. Personal to Ben and Matt: Paws off, guys.

FURTHERMORE Gary Oldman has been cast in the tasty role of vengeful Lecter victim Mason Verger in Ridley Scott‘s Hannibal…. Boys Don’t Cry director Kimberly Peirce is set to sign with New Line for her next project, another reality-based murder tale, but she’s not divulging more than that—not even to the studio.