Clooney Tackles 'Leatherheads'

SportsLeatherheads (movie)College FootballRenee ZellwegerSteven SoderberghGeorge ClooneyMichael Clayton (movie)

Universal is recruiting George Clooney to direct and star in the long-gestating early football flick "Leatherheads."

According to Variety, "Leatherheads" has been set up at Universal for more than a decade, attracting a variety of directors and writers before Clooney came on board.

The "Leatherheads" is set in the 1920s and focuses on an aging football player who recruits a young college star to join the newly formed professional football league. The trade paper suggests that Clooney would play the aging gridiron vet, while Renee Zellweger is in talks to play a major female role.

Clooney is currently rewriting the script and will also produce through his Smoke House Prods. shingle with Grant Heslov and Casey Silver joining him.

At various times, "Leatherheads" was expected to be directed by Jon Favreau ("Elf") and Jonathan Mostow ("Terminator 3"). The film was also a potential starring vehicle for Clooney, with Steven Soderbergh handling directing duties.

Clooney and Soderbergh are currently working on "Ocean's Thirteen" and also worked together on this winter's awards hopeful "The Good German." The "Syriana" Oscar winner also has Tony Gilroy's "Michael Clayton" in the can.

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