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Packaging Problems

February 21, 1988|Leonard Klady \f7

UA's troubled "Rainman" may be sinking under its flood of troubles. The Dustin Hoffman-Tom Cruise starrer appeared to have stabilized when director Sydney Pollack signed aboard (on the heels of Steven Spielberg and Martin Brest). The studio said shooting would start in April. But last week Pollack told key members of his production staff to take a long vacation.

"It's over," we were assured by a production source, "but you'll never get anyone to confirm it."

We were also told that Hoffman now plans to direct "The Dead Poet's Society" for Touchstone and Cruise has turned his attention to UA's "An Innocent Millionaire" for director Peter Weir.

Originally, Cruise's character--the scheming brother of an idiot savant (Hoffman)--was written for someone considerably older. "They never overcame the miscasting enforced when the studio buckled to an agency package," the source said, referring to the joint representation of Hoffman, Cruise and Pollack at powerful Creative Artists Agency.

Pollack's office refused to confirm or deny his departure from the project. However, a source close to the director insisted Pollack and writer David Rayfiel will go into seclusion shortly in a last ditch effort to make the script work.

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