Has Washington Left Unstoppable? Yes. Probably. Maybe.

I don’t get Hollywood — why would you even approve of a $100 million dollar movie when the star will get $20 million of that, the director will get another $9 million, and meanwhile, the only person in the cast people are anxious to see on the big screen again is little ol Chris Pine from “Star Trek”, who probably won’t make nearly as much as those two guys? Well Twentieth Century Fox apparently felt just like that, and has been asking Washington and Scott to take pay cuts in order to get their runaway train movie “Unstoppable” made. Unfortunately for them, Washington has “declined” to do so, which, I’m guessing they didn’t see coming.

Variety initially reported that Washington has bailed from “Unstoppable” after studio suits asked him to slice $4 million from his usual $20 million dollar salary, but has now updated their post, saying that the studio has since come back to Washington and his peeps with a new offer, and that Washington is considering returning to the project. No word yet on what would-be director Tony Scott, who last directed Washington in the remake of “The Taking of Pelham 123” and before that, “Deja Vu”, will do concerning the studio’s suggestion that he, too, lose a couple of mil from his usual payday.

Problems on the movie surfaced earlier concerning the film’s budget, which was initially set at $107 million. The studio got that down to $100 million, but now is looking at a more modest (at least by Hollywood standards) $90 million. To achieve that number, they’ll need Washington and Scott to take pay cuts, because apparently it’ll cost about $70 million or so to make a movie about a runaway train. No word on how much Pine would be making on the movie, but it’s probably a good bet that it’ll be much less than both Washington and Scott.

The movie would have seen Washington playing a veteran train engineer being put out to pasture who must team up with a young hotshot train engineer played by Chris Pine, his replacement, to stop a runaway train filled with deadly chemicals that threatens to wipe out a local town. See, it’s risks like that why I never developed any grand ambitions when it comes to this thing called occupation.

Update: 7/23/2009 Washington has signed back on and the movie is moving again. Eh, does anyone care?

Below: “That’s right, Chris Pine! Run, I’m a’comin’ after ya! Choo choo!”