Clooney or De Niro for "King Kong"

Stuff, reports “Director Peter Jackson is poised to flex his Hollywood muscle by securing a top male film star for his new project King Kong – he wants to lure George Clooney or Robert De Niro here. While Jackson is overseas attending The Return of the King premieres, he is also in talks with agents to cast stars for the $100 million remake, to be filmed in Wellington next year. Naomi Watts is in talks to play Ann Darrow, the female lead played by Fay Wray in the 1933 original film. But it is understood Jackson has long-harboured desires to cast Clooney – or Oscar winner De Niro – as male lead Carl Denham, the adventurer who captures the giant ape and brings him back to New York. Sources involved in the project said Jackson wanted to hire either star when he first talked to Universal Studios about the remake in 1996. The project was suspended in mid-1998 when the studio feared it would clash with two other monster movie remakes, Mighty Joe Young and Godzilla. And the director was also tipped to again put himself in one of his films in a cameo role – possibly that of the pilot who shoots down King Kong in the film’s climax, the source said.” The publication also said that Jackson and New Line Cinema could be denied the chance to bring JRR Tolkien’s other classic “The Hobbit” to the big screen. Seems the film rights are tied up in a complicated arrangement which would prevent New Line cashing in on any box office success.