NEW YORK (Variety) - Claire Danes, who just made a deal to co-star with Gabriel Byrne and Lena Olin in The Polish Wedding, for Fox Searchlight, is now close to a deal for back-to-back films at Paramount.
Danes has been offered the female lead in the Francis Ford Coppola-directed adaptation of the John Grisham bestseller The Rainmaker. At the same time, she's being courted to join Paul Newman and Susan Sarandon in the Robert Benton-directed film Magic Hour.
Sources said that Paramount is working with Danes' CAA agents Kevin Huvane and Karen Friedman and manager Rick Yorn of Addis-Wechsler to try and work out a way she can do both.
The Rainmaker, which is being produced by Douglas/Reuther Prods. at Paramount, is filling up quickly, with Edward Norton (Primal Fear) and Matt Damon (Courage Under Fire) both in contention to play the young lawyer who takes the case of an indigent family whose son is denied medical care by an insurer and dies as a result.
Joanne Woodward is being eyed to play the mother who presses the legal case over her deceased son. Sean Penn is being wooed to play the role of a shady paralegal and they're after Nick Nolte to play the insurance company rep. Leo Drumlin.
© 1996, Reuters/Variety By Chris Petrikin