Waiting for Warren

A post-"Ishtar" Warren Beatty has been telling the press that he's serious about working more often. He's claimed both the long-gestating "Howard Hughes" and "Dick Tracy" are back in active development. "Tracy," at 20th Century Fox, might start pre-production as early as March '88 with Beatty possibly directing, said a Beatty rep.

Now comes word from writer-director Wolfgang Petersen ("Das Boot," "Enemy Mine") that Beatty wants to do Petersen's "The Plastic Nightmare," described as an erotic thriller about an amnesiac stock broker.

"I bought the rights to the novel nine years ago because it was one of the most exciting plots I'd ever read," Petersen told us. "My agent suggested the main role would be perfect for Beatty and sent him the script. We got a call back the next day and he said he was interested in doing the film."

Beatty's waiting to read a new draft, which should be ready in early December, said Petersen. "If he commits, we'll film in March (New World produces), which works for his schedule."

Is it all true? Beatty's rep wouldn't comment.

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