Boone's Lick: According to Variety, Universal Pictures is negotiating with Lasse Hallstrom to direct Tom Hanks and Julianne Moore in Boone's Lick, an adaptation of Larry McMurtry's novel, scripted by the author and Diana Ossana.

The film is a Western in the vein of Lonesome Dove. Boone's Lick revolves around a headstrong woman who drags her family on a rickety wagon from Boone's Lick, Mo., to the Wyoming fort where her husband lives.

Moore will play the woman and Hanks will play her husband's brother, who escorts the woman, her four children and her father on the trek and falls in love with her during the perilous journey.

Hanks and Goetzman have been developing the project quietly, looking for an actress and director to get it going.

Brian B.