If all goes according to plan, it will be Edward James Olmos playing the part of the late Jim Croce in a film for Nelson Entertainment.
Known for his unpretentious way with a song, Croce died in a 1973 plane crash at age 30--just two years after he first hit the national charts with such hits as "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown" and "I Got a Name."
Ingrid Croce, the rock/pop star's widow, says she's had several meetings with Olmos--who was a musician prior to his acting days--and that a script is being written by Julian Barry ("Lenny"), based on an untitled biography she's writing with husband Jim Rock.
Publication is due in 1991 by Prima Publishing.
Herb Moellis, whose company, Lefrak Entertainment, has the Croce music rights, is "working closely with the project," says Ingrid, who says that Olmos won't do his own singing in the movie. "The music will be Jim's."
"He'd spent 15 years trying to 'make it,' " adds Ingrid, who was with him for 11 years before his death. "He just never gave up. I think that's one of the reasons that he still has such enormous appeal.
"Over the years I've been approached by so many people about doing this movie. With the way Hollywood is, I can't swear that it's actually going to finally happen. But I feel it getting close."