Cameron Crowe has set Patrick Fugit and Elle Fanning is in talks to star alongside Matt Damon and Scarlett Johansson in We Bought A Zoo. Thomas Hayden Church is also in the Fox film based on the Benjamin Mee memoir. Fugit, you’ll recall, played the young journalist who was essentially playing Crowe in Almost Famous, a memoirish film that chronicled the filmmaker’s experience when, as a teenaged journalist, he was hired by Rolling Stone magazine to go on the road with the Allman Brothers when the band was on the rise.
EXCLUSIVE: Scarlett Johansson is in final negotiations to star alongside Matt Damon in We Bought A Zoo, the Cameron Crowe-directed adaptation of the Benjamin Mee memoir for 20th Century Fox about an American who moves to England to operate a zoo. Deadline reported on Monday that Johansson had the inside track on the role, but she and the studio were apart on money. Fox was also talking to Amy Adams, Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Rachel McAdams. Crowe and Aline Brosh McKenna wrote the script. Johansson has been on the short list for several plum parts recently. She is in contention to play Daisy Buchanan in Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby, along with several other actresses. Lionsgate also wanted her for Pride, Prejudice and Zombies, but that now appears in doubt.
Baz Luhrmann isn’t the only director meeting with top young actresses for a project. Much the way that Luhrmann has a top group of thesps he’ll read with to find Daisy Buchanan in The Great Gatsby, Crowe has a short list to play the female lead opposite Matt Damon in We Bought A Zoo, the Benjamin Mee memoir about an American who moves to England to operate a zoo. I’m hearing that the top contender is Scarlett Johansson, but that Amy Adams, Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Rachel McAdams are also in the mix. Crowe and Aline Brosh McKenna wrote the script.