Tom Cruise, Reese Witherspoon in saddle for rodeo film?

Two A-listers reportedly are circling “Paper Wings,” a romance set in the unconventional world of rodeo.

The L.A. Times reports that Tom Cruise and Reese Witherspoon are eying the lead roles in the film, which currently is under development at Sony. Cruise would play a rodeo champion who falls for a country singer (Witherspoon).

Obviously, this is familiar ground for the Oscar-winning actress, who earned her statue portraying June Carter Cash in James Mangold’s “Walk the Line.” But this would be a stretch for Cruise, who banks on action roles such as the recently announced “Mission: Impossible IV.”

According to the Times, Will Smith’s Overbrook Entertainment is producing the project, and “Seven Pounds” director Gabriele Muccino has been discussed as a possible helmer. Prior to “Crazy Heart,” I might have said the success of this project was unlikely. But country music stories seem to be en vogue at the moment, so if Hollywood can strike while the iron is hot, “Paper Wings” could take flight.

About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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