February 23, 2006 08:00 AM

With their loudly trumpeted movie project Eucalyptus having fallen through last year, Australia’s most highly visible international movie stars, Nicole Kidman and Russell Crowe, are finally getting ready to costar on the screen.

Though no title has been announced, Kidman’s Moulin Rouge director, Baz Luhrmann, says the new project will be Australian historical epic to be shot in the Outback starting in August.

The filmmaker’s publicist, Maria Farmer, confirmed on Thursday that Kidman, 37, and Crowe, 41, have signed for the movie, which Luhrmann described to The Australian newspaper as a sweeping epic in the grand tradition of Gone With the Wind and Lawrence of Arabia.

“We have some of the most extraordinary landscape on the planet and we want to get two of the most extraordinary actors in the world and put them … in that landscape,” Luhrmann told the paper.

He said the story would be set in Australia from the mid-1930s leading up to the Japanese bombing of the tropical northern city of Darwin in World War II.

When she was scheduled to begin shooting Eucalyptus exactly a year ago – the movie quickly unraveled reportedly due to Crowe’s disagreements with director Jocelyn Moorhouse – Nicole Kidman said: “It has long been a dream of mine to come home to make a film telling a uniquely Australian story. To be able to do so with my good friend Russell makes Eucalyptus extra special.”

You May Like