The delay was called shortly before shooting was to have begun. The main problem appeared to be the script from writer-director Jocelyn Moorhouse, the Australian said.
"The reality is that the script was not at a level that everyone wanted," said John Scott, marketing manager for Twentieth Century Fox.
Australian author Murray Bail, whose novel was the basis for the $25 million film, also had reservations about the casting of Kidman, who at age 37 is playing the 19-year-old heroine.
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