A director has been set for the long-gestating sci-fi film Passengers, which has Keanu Reeves attached to star. The story takes place on a spacecraft that is transporting thousands of people to a distant colony. A malfunction in one of its sleep chambers causes a single passenger to awake 90 years before everyone else, and faced with the prospect of growing old and dying alone, he decides to wake up a second passenger. What follows is a love story under rather unique circumstances. Deadline reports that Brian Kirk, who has helmed episodes of Game of Thrones and Boardwalk Empire, has been tapped to make his feature directorial debut on the project for Wayfare Entertainment.
Kirk was previously eyed to direct the upcoming Thor sequel before the job eventually went to fellow Game of Thrones alum Alan Taylor. Passengers has a script by Prometheus co-writer Jon Spaihts, and with a director now set, production can hopefully get underway sooner rather than later. The world could definitely use more original sci-fi films, and Passengers promises to be a welcome addition.
Though 30 Days of Night director David Slade is still developing a reboot of Daredevil, it looks like he may be making a different project before he tackles the superhero pic. Slade will direct the psychological thriller Villain for Wayfare Entertainment. The story centers on “two brothers as they confront their dark past in an unforgiving wilderness.” Production is set to take place in Alaska and producers are currently casting the two leads. Hit the jump for more on the project and Slade’s upcoming directorial projects, as well as the full press release regarding Villain.
Last December, we reported that Neil Jordan (The Brave One) would be adapting Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book. It’s been quiet since then, but today Heat Vision reports that Chris Columbus’ 1492 Pictures and South Korean company CJ Entertainment are coming on board to help produce the film. They’ll join producers Wayfare Entertainment, Framestore, and Gaiman.
Graveyard Book is like Ruyard Kipling’s “The Jungle Book” except the boy (named “Nobody Owens”) is raised by ghosts in a cemetery instead of animals in a jungle. He has a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy – an ancient Indigo Man beneath the hill, a gateway to a desert leading to an abandoned city of ghouls, the strange and terrible menace of the Sleer. Also, if he leaves the graveyard, he will be attacked by a man named Jack has already killed Nobody’s family. It won the 2009 Newberry Medel and spent over 50 weeks on the New York Times Bestseller List. An adaptation of Gaiman’s book Coraline managed to grab $124 million worldwide last year along with an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Film. I’d say 1492 and CJ Entertainment have made a wise investment. Hit the jump for two other projects they’re investing in.