'Lear' shelved

A Hollywood adaptation of Shakespearean tragedy 'King Lear' has been cancelled after reportedly falling victim to the current global economic crisis.

A Hollywood adaptation of Shakespearean tragedy 'King Lear' has been cancelled after reportedly falling victim to the current global economic crisis.

The film was due to star Anthony Hopkins in the title role alongside Gwyneth Paltrow, Keira Knightley and Naomi Watts as the monarch's three daughters.

The $36m (€28m) production was announced at last year's Cannes Film Festival but has now been scrapped.

The decision was reportedly made after movie bosses found it difficult to secure the required investment.

A spokeswoman for Ruby Films, the production company behind the film, said: "Ruby are no longer doing it - the film will no longer go ahead. It has not really been announced."

The move now clears the way for a rival production from director Michael Radford, starring Al Pacino, which will still go ahead.

The movie industry has seen more than a dozen adaptations of Shakespeare's famous work, most notably a 1983 version starring Laurence Olivier and Diana Rigg.

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