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Costner May Put Morgan Creek Ahead of Robin Hood Pack

July 24, 1990|NINA J. EASTON | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Morgan Creek has locked up Kevin Costner to star in its upcoming Robin Hood epic, "Prince of Thieves," throwing into question the future of two other projects based on the popular legend.

"Prince of Thieves," based on a script by Pen Densham and John Watson that Morgan Creek bought for $1.2 million last February, is scheduled for release next spring, the company's officials said. Warner Bros. will distribute the film in the U.S., while Morgan Creek is retaining overseas rights to the movie.

Morgan Creek has also moved up its release date on the film from next summer to spring, apparently in an attempt to beat two other projects to the theater.

The fate of one of those projects--Tri-Star's "Robin Hood"--hinges on casting, studio chief Mike Medavoy said. "We're looking to see if there is anybody we want to make the picture with," Medavoy said, adding that he will only make the film if it can be completed before the others.

Fox also has a project in the works, called "The Adventures of Robin Hood," to be directed by John McTiernan ("Die Hard," "Predator"). Two weeks ago, Fox chairman Joe Roth told Daily Variety he planned to make his movie "no matter what." On Monday, Roth could not be reached for comment on the casting of Costner, but a Fox spokeswoman said the studio is proceeding with its project and that McTiernan is still attached.

David Nicksay, Morgan Creek's production president, described his company's film as a "very contemporary, fun-filled, action-packed reinvention of the legend, a '90s 'Raiders of the Lost Ark' version of Robin Hood." The film will be directed by Kevin Reynolds, a Steven Spielberg discovery who directed Costner in "Fandango," a 1985 film adapted from Reynolds' student project.

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