Viggo Mortensen Exits Universal's ‘Snow White’ Project

Studio must now find replacement actor for its project — one of two “Snow White” films in the works — slated to begin production in the fall

Viggo Mortensen won't save Kristen Stewart's "Snow White" after all.

Universal has decided to pass on the Oscar-nominated actor, who was in negotiations to play the Huntsman in the studio's "Snow White and the Huntsman," TheWrap has confirmed.

Losing the lead male character is a blow for the movie, which is scheduled to start shooting this fall and is scheduled to be released Dec. 21, 2012. It is one of two "Snow White" projects under way; Tarsem Singh is directing a "Snow White" movie for Relativity Media that is slated for a June 29, 2012 release with Julia Roberts cast as the evil queen.

Also read: Universal Wins Bidding War for 'Snow White and the Huntsman'

Universal acquired Evan Daugherty's spec script for the movie after a heated bidding war in 2010. It was reportedly one of the biggest spec deals of the year.

Stewart remains in negotiations for the role of Snow White and Charlize Theron is in talks to play the evil queen. Rupert Sanders is directing.

The movie, based on the Brothers Grimm fairy tale, focuses on the Huntsman, a character who is supposed to kill Snow White but ends up protecting her, mentoring her and teaching her how to fight and survive.

In the Relativity project, Snow White bands together with a gang of seven quarrelsome dwarfs to reclaim what is rightfully hers after her evil stepmother kills her father and destroys the kingdom.

Variety initially reported the news.