(FROM VARIETY) – Javier Bardem (No Country For Old Men) has exited director Rob Marshall's feature musical Nine, citing exhaustion from the past year's work and awards-season schedule. Bardem, who won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role in the Coen Brothers' No Country, was set to play Guido Contini, the lead character in Nine. The story is about a film director who experiences personal and creative crisis trying to balance all the women in his life. The Weinstein Co. movie is an adaptation of a stage musical inspired by Fellini's movie 8 ½. Bardem is said to have loved the script and the idea of working with Marshall but simply needs some time off, perhaps as long as a year, to recharge his batteries.
Bardem's exit marks his second departure from a major project in as many months, following the announcement that Carmen Maura (Volver) has replaced him in Francis Ford Coppola's family drama Tetro. That move was officially attributed to Coppola's decision that the role was better filled by a female, though it has been reported that Bardem simply became unavailable.
The Spanish actor will next be seen in the Woody Allen-directed Vicky Christina Barcelona, which will debut at Cannes. (Variety)