59403592Hilary Swank ‘ a two-time Oscar winner ‘ will try again next fall to score big at the boxoffice and with critics.

Swank’s latest film, “Betty Anne Waters,” has been sold to Fox Searchlight. Directed by Tony Goldwyn, “Betty Anne Waters” concerns a sister who puts herself through college and law school to defend her brother on murder charges. Swank plays the title character, Sam Rockwell is the brother. Melissa Leo, Peter Gallagher, and Clea DuVall co-star.

Yesterday, one of the movie bloggers outrageously wondered why, after Mira Nair’s “Amelia” tanked, anyone would want to be in business with Hilary Swank. This is one of he more preposterous things I’ve read in these blogs. Swank has two Oscars (for “Boys Don’t Cry”and “Million Dollar Baby”). She’s a great young actress with a huge future. That assertion was so crazy that I called up Fox Searchlight chief Nancy Utley to see what she thought.

“We love Hilary, who wouldn’t want to have one of her movies?” Nancy said. I agree. “This movie feels very commercial. The performances are wonderful. It’s a true story, too. Betty Anne ‘ who’s alive ‘ didn’t have a high school degree. She became a lawyer. When we tested the film at previews, it went through the roof.”

So there, bloggers. “Amelia” was no dud, but it was hard to market. Everyone knew the ending, for one thing. Richard Gere was miscast, some thought. And there was no one alive to hang the marketing on.

Utley, who’s busy with “Crazy Heart” and “Fantastic Mr. Fox” Oscar campaigns, says “Betty Anne Waters” will be at some key festivals, then open in the fall.

Author
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. He wrote the Intelligencer column for NY Magazine in the mid 90s, reporting on the OJ Simpson trial, as well as for the real Parade magazine (when it was owned by Conde Nast), and has written for the New York Observer, Details, Vogue, Spin, the New York Times, NY Post, Washington Post, and NY Daily News among many publications. He is the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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