Julia Roberts May Replace Cate Blanchett in Closer Film

News   Julia Roberts May Replace Cate Blanchett in Closer Film
Academy Award winner Julia Roberts is currently in discussions to join the cast of the film of Patrick Marber's play Closer.

Variety reports that Roberts may replace Cate Blanchett, who bowed out of the film last week. Blanchett departed the Mike Nichols-directed project because she is pregnant. Produced by Scott Rudin and Robert Fox, the film also stars Jude Law, Natalie Portman and Clive Owen.

Nominated for a Tony Award for Best Play, Closer opened March 25, 1999, at Broadway's Music Box Theatre following a London run at the Royal National Theatre. Playwright Marber also directed the piece, which featured Anna Friel, Rupert Graves, Ciaran Hinds and Natasha Richardson.

Closer explores the ever-changing state of modern relationships through a quartet of lovers tangled in a web of love, lust, sex and betrayal. The play won the 1997 Evening Standard Best Comedy Award and the 1998 Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Play.

Julia Roberts received an Academy Award for her performance in "Erin Brockovich." She was also Oscar-nominated for "Pretty Woman" and "Steel Magnolias." The actress will next appear on the silver screen in "Mona Lisa Smile," which opens Dec. 19.

Nichols' screen adaptation of Tony Kushner's Angels in America will hit HBO this year. Nichols received an Academy Award for Best Director for the 1968 classic "The Graduate." He was also Oscar-nominated for Best Director for his work on "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?," "Silkwood" and "Working Girl." On Broadway, Nichols received Tony Awards for directing The Real Thing, The Prisoner of Second Avenue, Plaza Suite, Barefoot in the Park and Luv and The Odd Couple.

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