They might want to create a new Oscar for Edward Norton: Hollywood’s Biggest Pain in the Butt.
Word is Norton is warring with Marvel Studios over the final cut of “The Incredible Hulk,” which he wrote and stars in, but is threatening not to promote. The temperamental star’s rep denied any serious friction, insisting: “Edward was brought on board by Marvel as a producer, screenwriter and actor, so it shouldn’t surprise anyone that he has a lot of creative input into the post-production process.
His deal was for all three and he takes those roles seriously.” She would not elaborate on Norton’s issues. The Oscar-nominated actor has a reputation for being difficult.
Tony Kaye, who directed him in “American History X,” charged Norton re-edited the flick to give himself more screen time. And screenwriter/director Joe Eszterhas once cracked: “You don’t want Edward Norton to star in your movie. He now rewrites all the scripts he agrees to act in.”
Universal Pictures, distributor of “Hulk,” which debuts nationwide on June 13, had no comment.
The new Incredible Hulk movie stars Edward Norton as David Banner, a scientist who is trying to discover a cure for the gamma radiation that poisoned his cells and turns him into the Hulk.
I’ll see it just for Ed Norton, he’s hot.
Edward Norton is exiting “State of Play,” and talks are under way for Ben Affleck to replace him in the Kevin Macdonald-directed drama for Universal Pictures and Working Title.”State of Play” is expected to begin production in the first week of January.
Norton becomes the second high profile cast member to disembark, following the exit of his “Fight Club” co-star Brad Pitt just before Thanksgiving.
While Universal threatened legal action with Pitt, Norton’s exit has no rancor. His problem: he had committed to follow “State of Play” by playing the dual leads in “Leaves of Grass,” an independent comedy written and to be directed by Tim Blake Nelson. Norton is producing that picture with his Class 5 Films partner Bill Migliore, and Nelson. Barbarian Films is financing.
Pitt’s exit, and the courtship of Russell Crowe to replace him, moved the “State of Play” start date from mid-November into January. That created a clash, and the studio, working with Norton’s and Affleck’s reps at Endeavor, worked out an exit plan.
Now it will be Affleck who plays a fast-rising politician who is caught up in a murder conspiracy. Crowe will play a journalist who leads a newspaper’s investigation into the killing. He’s conflicted in that he once ran the pol’s campaigns, and he is now romancing his estranged wife.
Still in the cast are Helen Mirren, Rachel McAdams, Robin Wright Penn and Jason Bateman. Andrew Hauptman and Working Title partners Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner are producing. While Mirren had a stop date so that she could star with Joe Pesci in the Taylor Hackford-directed “Love Ranch,” attempts are being made to work out the dates.
Affleck’s most recent credits include a starring role in last year’s “Hollywoodland” and his directorial debut, “Gone Baby Gone.”
Edward Norton is getting back in the ring with his “Fight Club” partner Brad Pitt.
Duo will star in “State of Play,” Universal Pictures’ adaptation of the British miniseries. Kevin Macdonald (“The Last King of Scotland”) is directing the Matthew Michael Carnahan script.
Norton will play a congressman whose speedy political rise is threatened by an investigation into the death of his mistress. Pitt plays a politico-turned-journalist whose relationship with the solon is compromised when he oversees his newspaper’s investigation into the murder and develops a relationship with the pol’s estranged wife.
Project has been a high priority for U since the studio won an auction for rights to the six-hour mini written by Paul Abbott. Though Pitt has long been attached, he had been courted for other pics while Tony Gilroy worked on a rewrite. Pitt recently committed after that script was turned in, and the project is on track for a November start.
Norton will begin shooting “State of Play” days after he wraps “The Incredible Hulk” for Marvel Studios, with Universal releasing the Louis Leterrier-directed superhero film on June 13.