Movie File: Britney Spears, Jennifer Garner, Jamie Foxx, Eddie Griffin & More

Singer tried out for Naomi Watts' part in 'I Heart Huckabees.'

Britney Spears hearts Huckabees? Maybe not so much anymore. Turns out the newlywed auditioned and campaigned for a part in David O. Russell‘s “I Heart Huckabees.” “Britney wanted the Naomi Watts part and came and read for me three times,” Russell said. “She didn’t get it [and] she was angry. … I mean, I like Britney and I would still work with Britney. I’d love to use her in a movie … in the right role.” …

Jennifer Garner is in negotiations to follow up “Elektra” with a return to romantic comedies in “Catch and Release.” Susannah Grant, who wrote “Erin Brockovich” and “28 Days,” will direct and also penned the script about a widow who must deal with the secrets of her recently deceased husband. … Jamie Foxx has been tapped to play an undercover government agent forced to assassinate his crooked mentor in “The Executioner’s Game,” based on a novel due in January from Gary Hardwick, best known for directing “Deliver Us From Eva” and “The Brothers.” Hardwick will adapt his book but is so far not attached to direct. …

A Richard Pryor miniseries is in the works for Showtime with Eddie Griffin starring as the comedian. Clifton Powell (“Rush Hour,” “Ray”) will play Pryor’s dad, Buckey. “I’m really looking forward to that,” Powell said at the recent Ray Charles tribute concert. “To be in the Ray Charles movie and then segue into Richard Pryor, that’s incredible.” … Meanwhile, the late Bill Hicks, a comedian Pryor once called “dangerous and brave and scary all at once,” is coming to DVD for the first time. “Bill Hicks Live” is due Tuesday. …

Burt Reynolds has signed on to play Boss Hogg in the big-screen version of “The Dukes of Hazzard.” Willie Nelson has also joined the cast, which features Seann William Scott and Johnny Knoxville as Bo and Luke Duke, and Jessica Simpson as Daisy Duke. The country singer will play Uncle Jesse in the movie, which Jay Chandrasekhar (“Super Troopers”) is directing. … “American Beauty” director Sam Mendes is bringing “Shrek” to Broadway. A timetable has not been announced. …

A movie based on “Good Times,” the mid-’70s sitcom that launched Janet Jackson‘s career and broke racial barriers by focusing on a black family living in a Chicago housing project, is in the works. Producers Rodney Omanoff and Graham Kaye won the rights from a long list of suitors that included Wesley Snipes, Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds and the Wayans family. … Speaking of the Wayans, along with bringing “The Munsters” to the big screen, the brothers will follow up “White Chicks” with “Little Man,” which Keenen Ivory Wayans will again direct and co-write. In the movie, Shawn Wayans will play a man desperate to be a father, who mistakes an extremely short, baby-faced criminal on the run (Marlon Wayans) as his newly adopted son. …

Hugh Grant‘s schedule is open after “Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason” hits theaters November 16, and one thing he’s not going to be penciling in is stage acting. “I think a lot of theatre is sustained on sort of bullsh–, really … on kind of reverence, on the part of middle-class audiences thinking, ‘This is good for me in some way,’ ” Grant said recently. “And I don’t want to be in business like that. I think it’s a bit depressing. I think an awful lot of theatre-going in England is like church-going. It used to be sort of considered good for the soul in some way.” …

Former “The Daily Show” correspondent and “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy” co-star Steve Carell will star in the self-explanatory “The 40-Year-Old Virgin.” Carell co-wrote the script with “Anchorman” and “Freaks and Geeks” producer Judd Apatow, who will make his directorial debut on the comedy. Apatow, who co-wrote the upcoming “Fun With Dick and Jane” with Jim Carrey, is also executive producing the upcoming “Kicking and Screaming” with Will Ferrell and a college comedy. Carell is also set to star as agent Maxwell Smart in a movie based on the TV show “Get Smart.” …

Djimon Hounsou and Steve Buscemi have joined Ewan McGregor and Scarlett Johansson in the cast of “The Island.” Michael Bay (“Pearl Harbor”) is directing the sci-fi thriller about harvested humans. … Onyx rapper Sticky Fingaz, who has more than 20 movies on his résumé, recently finished shooting a remake of the 1965 action flick “Flight of the Phoenix” on a desolate island near Africa. Giovanni Ribisi, Tyrese and Dennis Quaid co-star. …

“Sex and the City” darling Kristin Davis is in negotiations to play Tim Allen‘s wife in a remake of 1959′s “The Shaggy Dog.” The movie, which Brian Robbins (“Varsity Blues”) is directing when shooting starts in November, will center on Allen’s character, who occasionally changes into a sheepdog. … Director Brian Dannelly will follow up “Saved!” with “Army Geek,” a comedy about a drifter whipped into shape by his female drill sergeant at an Army boot camp. Dannelly and writing partner Michael Urban are also working on the script. …

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