OSCAR-winning actor Benicio Del Toro was reportedly paid $5 million (GBP2.7 million) to star in now-defunct film TRU BLU.

Last month (OCT04) UNIVERSAL STUDIOS cancelled the Del Toro and DENZEL WASHINGTON-starring biopic of infamous 1970s drug dealer FRANK LUCAS.

Only weeks before it was cancelled, Training Day movie maker Antoine Fuqua was fired as director and is now considering filing a law suit against the studios.

According to American gossip columnist Ted Casablanca, Del Toro had already accepted the millions to play detective RICHIE ROBERTS, when the movie was unexpectedly pulled from pre-production.

A source says, "Benicio got paid 5 million bucks to get fired from Tru Blu and he's been putting on the pounds ever since.

"What's ironic, is that the producers were paying for him to train and get in shape because he was really at his heaviest."

Despite his increasing waistline, Del Toro's alleged new love, actress Sara Foster is happy with the extra weight.

The source adds, "He'd grab junk food whenever he could. And now it's worse than ever. But Sara doesn't seem to mind."

09/11/2004 17:34