Kidman Pulls Out of Weird Film Trilogy

07/24/2003 at 10:20 AM EDT

Nicole Kidman will not be punching the time clock again for her "Dogville" director, Lars von Trier, now that she's pulled out of her upcoming starring role in the controversial Danish filmmaker's "Manderlay," reports Variety.

Scheduling conflicts are reportedly being blamed, but the star and director made it known at the Cannes Film Festival last May that they had very vocal differences while shooting "Dogville," which has yet to be released in America and was met with a very mixed reaction in Cannes.

"Manderlay," due to wrap by July of next year, is the second in von Trier's "U.S.A." movie trilogy that began with "Dogville."

Kidman plays a woman on the run in the minimalist movie set in the Rocky Mountains in the 1930s. "Manderlay" will reportedly deal with slavery in the American South.

Kidman reportedly was due to star in all three movies.

"We and she would love for her to do it, but we simply couldn't make it work," Von Trier's producer, Vibeke Windelov, tells Variety.

No replacement has been named, but according to Windelov: "We just want a good actress, wherever she's from. When we started out with Nicole, she was not such a big movie star as she has now become."

This is not the first film from which "The Hours" Oscar winner, 36, has withdrawn recently. Catherine Zeta-Jones is said to be replacing Kidman in a movie with Brad Pitt, "Mr. And Mrs. Smith," according to New York's Daily News. No word on why she backed out.

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