Angelina Jolie fills Tom Cruise's shoes in 'Edwin A. Salt'
Jolie is close to inking a deal to play the lead, a CIA officer accused of being a Russian sleeper spy who has to stay on the run until she can prove her innocence.
Hey, that sounds a little familiar, like a mix of the "Mission Impossible" and "The Bourne Identity" franchises and a few others thrown in for good measure. But starring a woman!
The Columbia Pictures espionage action thriller will be reworked by screenwriter Kurt Wimmer for Angelina. Philip Noyce ("Rabbit Proof Fence") will direct.
Cruise's interest waned recently, and the script had several A-list male stars lining up. But when Jolie expressed an interest, the studio figured, hey, why the heck not? After all, Universal beefed up Jolie's "Wanted" part, and the film grossed $132 million domestically. With "Lara Croft" and "Mr. and Mrs. Smith," under her belt, Jolie is a proven action heroine.
Now about that "Edwin" name? Will it become "Edwina A. Salt?"
Mmmm. Maybe not.
Now the only question is whether she will do this one or Lionsgate's "Atlas Shrugged" as her first film after the birth of her twins. If I were her, I'd ease back into shape with the Ayn Rand period drama, then start pumping iron and working out for that spy-thriller action flick.
Her film "The Changeling," directed by Clint Eastwood, opens in late October.
This woman is unstoppable!
Photo: Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt at the "Ocean's 13" premiere in L.A.