Fiancées and finances may kill 'Barbarella'

Universal balks at Robert Rodriguez's Fonda-ness for Rose McGowan as Queen of the Galaxy.
Universal Studios has withdrawn from backing the big-budget remake of Barbarella, because director Robert Rodriguez (Sin City) has insisted on casting his new fiancée, Rose McGowan (Grindhouse), in the lead role, a source with knowledge of the production told SPENCER MORGAN at The New York Observer.

The source put the budget at nearly $100 million, although the studio lowered the offered number significantly upon learning of Rodriguez’s casting preference.

"It’s sort of embarrassing for everyone involved," the source said. "No one thinks Rose can carry the movie, but Robert won’t listen."

Many of those involved have tried to get Rodriguez to take off his Rose-colored glasses, but the director is sticking by his curvaceous fiancée.

Nepotism is hardly new to this property, however.

The original 1968 Roger Vadim-directed Barbarella, about a seductive astronaut traveling the galaxy, starred Vadim's then-spouse Jane Fonda.

Though famous for his moviemaking frugality, Rodriguez is shopping Barbarella around to other studios in the belief that an outer space flick can't be done well for $60 mil.

"Universal had initially signed on for $60 million, but then when we were done with the script it wound up at closer to $82 million," he said.

Rodriguez claimed that his vision for the Barbarella remake came to him while flipping through the trades one morning, at which point he asked his fiancée if she was interested, because "she was perfect for this part."

McGowan responded in the characteristic fashion that would shock Charmed fans: "Oh, we’d rock that $h!t so hard."
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The New York Observer