John Travolta has been dropped from the new Dallas movie, despite having been attached to the project for more than two years. Travolta - who had been cast as oil tycoon villain J.R. Ewing in the film adaptation of the 1980s TV soap - was "let go about two weeks ago", according to U.S. reports. A source tells the New York Post's gossip column PageSix, "John was given a nice seven-figure 'gift' to go away quietly. He also got five family members roles in the movie, and they aren't going to be in it now, either." And while a friend of Travolta has confirmed the star's non-involvement, he disputes rumours the Grease star was "paid off" to leave the project. The pal says, "He is not doing the movie. They've gone in a different direction than was originally intended. I don't know about any 'gift,' and I don't think the family member thing is correct." Travolta is not the only star to have been allegedly dropped from the project. The first major upheaval occurred last year (06) when Shirley MACLaine, who was to play Miss Ellie, Luke Wilson (Bobby Ewing) and Jennifer Lopez (Sue Ellen) were dropped from the cast. Meg Ryan and Matthew MCConaughey's names were then brought up, but neither was signed. Director Robert Luketic was also rumoured to have been let go in favour of Bend It Like Beckham filmmaker Gurinder Chadha, and the budget was downsized from an original $65 million (GBP32.5 million) to "something way less," according to sources. A spokesperson for 20th Century Fox declined to comment.