The only Warren Beatty project I know of that could reasonably deploy his talents as a director, producer, writer and star would be his Howard Hughes property. Because he’s too old to play Dick Tracy again…right? A septugenarian comic-book hero sounds like lunacy. TheWrap and Variety reported late this afternoon that a Beatty pic with the 74 year-old hyphenate doing all the above will roll later this year for Paramount. No title, no announced subject…keep ’em guessing.

Warren Beatty, Brad Grey at 2007 Golden Globes after-party. (Pic taken by yours truly.)

Deadline‘s Michael Fleming reported last night that the project was a comedy.

Variety‘s Justin Kroll wrote that Beatty “[has] been shopping the script for the past few weeks.” “Warren’s script is quintessentially Beatty, elegantly written and wonderfully entertaining,” Paramount honcho Brad Grey said in a statement. “It is our privilege to have one of the great artists in the history of the film industry come home to Paramount.”

Update: Former hotshot entertainment business reporter Anita Busch posted the following last night, a bit after 8 pm:

The gist is that (a) Grey owed Beatty for something, and now he’s paid him back with this deal, and that (b) Beatty, in Busch’s view, is some kind of coward because, she implies, he once refused to acknowledge and/or righteously respond to something heinous. It’s a very cryptic and teasing comment. Busch seems to be saying, “I remember and I know, and if you had my memory and knowledge of the dirty underbelly of things in this town, you would also. But I’ll never get specific because I’m out of the game.”