Kristen Stewart has taken her career in an interesting trajectory over the past few years. Previously saddled with the Twilight franchise and then being devoured by the gossip rags for her personal affairs, Stewart has pivoted towards indie features and received acclaim for her work in films such as Clouds of Sils Maria, Certain Women, and Equals.
Her last big studio film was The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 (I guess you could count American Ultra as a studio film, but it’s a minor action comedy rather than a blockbuster), but now it looks like she’s aiming to return to something more action-oriented with Underwater. THR reports that Stewart is in talks to lead the film with Will Eubank (The Signal) attached to direct.
The story “centers on an underwater scientific crew that, after facing an earthquake, are forced to go on dangerous journey for survival. The story has been described as an underwater Armageddon.” Stewart would play “a jaded and hardened crew member” if she signs on to the picture, which is aiming to start filming in March in New Orleans.
While the plot could go either way (I’ve never thought to myself, “Gosh, I wish more movies were like Armageddon), I hope that the film gives Stewart a good platform to show her action chops. Even in a film like Snow White and the Huntsman, her turn towards being an action hero felt perfunctory and unearned. It also felt like she was saddled, time and again, with bad scripts. Moving towards indie fare and thoughtful directors has given her the space to grow as an actor.
Also, I’m all for movie blockbusters putting female heroes in the lead. We don’t need yet another “White dude saves the world” movie, and if Stewart’s got a strong character for Underwater, I’m excited to see what she does with it.