Hollywood Gets Its Leading Lady Back
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 10, 2009 4:28 PM CST

(Newser) – Julia Roberts is poised to step back into the spotlight with next month’s Duplicity, and Hollywood is hoping she can do again what none of her successors has been able to—pull boffo box office, the New York Times reports. “It’s just so clearly there,” said a producer of the industrial espionage-cum-romantic caper, costarring Clive Owen. “I don’t know how we know it, but we do.” Roberts hasn’t headlined a flick since 2001.

The 41-year-old actress stepped back at the peak of her fame. Those close to the star say her 2002 marriage and her 3 young children simply took precedence. But the film industry clearly missed her. “Nobody has stepped into the vacuum,” said one producer, who maintained anonymity to avoid upsetting the likes of Reese Witherspoon and Katherine Heigl.