FilmDistrict has followed up their recent purchase of the Ryan Gosling-starring Drive by acquiring the U.S. rights to Lockout, an sci-fi actioner produced by Luc Besson. The film stars Guy Pearce and Maggie Grace, and is currently on track to go into production early next year, with a planned release date of early 2012.
For a synopsis on the film, as well as some of my thoughts regarding the project, hit the jump.
James Mather and Stephen St. Leger working from a script they co-wrote with Besson. Here’s the synopsis courtesy of Variety:
“Lockout tells the story of a falsely convicted ex-government agent (Pearce) whose only chance of freedom is to accept a dangerous mission and rescue the president’s daughter (Grace) from rioting prisoners at an outer space maximum security prison.”
Might this be the first of Besson’s long-promised sci-fi trilogy? Dare we hope? Aside from the obvious excitement inherent in Besson’s return to Fifth Element territory, let’s not overlook the fact that Lockout will finally, at long last, provide Guy Pearce the chance to play the role of action hero — a persona I’ve personally been craving to see him try out ever since his wonderfully nuanced turn in The Proposition.
Granted, neither Mather nor St. Leger yet have a substantial credit to their name. And as Pierre Morel so ably demonstrated with that other Besson-written actioner from earlier this year, sometimes actually filming the French talent’s ideas is way easier said than done. Still, I’m cautiously optimistic. The premise is intriguing enough, and Maggie Grace proved suitably endangered in a similar damsel-in-distress role with 2009’s smash Taken (also written by Besson). Cross your fingers Lockout turns out more like Leon than, say, Arthur and the Invisibles.