VARIETY – EXCLUSIVE: “The Maze Runner’s” Kaya Scodelario, “John Wick’s” Lance Reddick and “Bohemian Rhapsody’s” Ben Hardy are set to lead the cast of sci-fi thriller “Apteros.”
Independent Entertainment have launched international sales on the pic, which is written and directed by Edward Anderson (“Shuttle”). Producer Laura Rister (“Mr Malcolm’s List”) will handle North American rights with Independent Entertainment.
“Apteros” sees a crew of seven astronauts, including science officer Tressie (Scodelario), captain Mitchell (Reddick), systems engineer Wade (Hardy) and their onboard AI, en-route to Mars after bacterial life is discovered on the red planet in the not-too-distant future.
Soon however, a number of unusual events unfold aboard the spacecraft, which is named APTEROS, and the crew find themselves divided in a tense psychological battle as they struggle to work out what is happening and realize nothing is as it seems.
Thrown into a desperate tailspin, soon it’s not just the mission at stake, but all of life on earth.
“Apteros” is set to shoot in Hungary this fall, with additional cast soon to be announced.
Rister produces for Untitled Entertainment while Budapest-based Hero Squared will serve as co-producers.
Independent Entertainment and Hero Squared previously worked together on sci-fi feature “Archive.”
Anderson previously wrote heist thriller “Flawless,” starring Michael Caine and Demi Moore, and “Shuttle,” which debuted at SXSW prior to a theatrical release, while Rister previously produced Jennifer Fox’s 2018 cine-memoir “The Tale.” Her next film, “Mr Malcolm’s List,” is set for a wide release by Bleecker Street Films this summer.
“The idea of a mystery set in space is uniquely fascinating and combining the challenges and risks of mankind’s search for alien life elevates the possibilities,” said Anderson. “With ‘Apteros,’ I’m excited to explore these concepts in a hard science fiction context, by creating a very human story about paranoia, isolation, fear, and the dangers of technology in the face of a realistic discovery of alien life in its smallest, most baffling form.”
In a statement, Independent Entertainment said: “Independent have a long history of working on bold and ambitious sci-fi, and the script for ‘Apteros’ rates as one of the best we’ve seen. Edward has created a gripping thriller full of big ideas, and we can’t wait for him bring his vision to life with this exceptionally talented group of actors.”
Independent Entertainment’s Sarah Lebutsch, MD of international sales, will handle international sales and co-rep with Rister for North America.
Kaya Scodelario is represented by CAA, Curtis Brown and Anonymous Content. Lance Reddick is represented by Paradigm, Grandview and James Hornstein. Ben Hardy is represented by UTA, Untitled Entertainment and CAM in London
Ben attended the Virgin Media British Academy Television Awards tonight in London and I’ve just added photos of him walking the red carpet into the photo gallery! Enjoy!
DEADLINE – Netflix has acquired global rights to the YA romance “The Statistical Probability of Love At First Sight,” starring Haley Lu Richardson and Ben Hardy.
The film adaptation of Jennifer E. Smith’s popular novel by the same name was financed and produced by ACE Entertainment, the producers of the “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” movies.
Richardson (“Unpregnant”) and Hardy (“6 Underground”) star in the movie as Hadley and Oliver, two strangers who begin to fall for each other on a flight from New York to London. But, as the official logline explains, “Is it misfortune or fate that separates them when they land? The probability of ever finding each other again seems impossible, but love — and London — may have a way of defying the odds.”
The film’s cast is rounded out by Rob Delaney (“Catastrophe”) who plays Hadley’s father, whose move to London after his divorce — and plan to remarry — kicks off the story’s plot; Dexter Fletcher (“Lock, Stock, And Two Smoking Barrels,” “Rocketman” director) who plays Val, Oliver’s eccentric father; and Sally Phillips (“Bridget Jones’s Diary”) as Oliver’s mother Tessa. Jameela Jamil (“The Good Place,” “She Hulk”) is the story’s narrator.
“To All the Boys: Always and Forever” screenwriter Katie Lovejoy adapted the screenplay for the movie, directed by Vanessa Caswill (best known for helming the “Little Women” miniseries).
“The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight” is produced by Matt Kaplan, through his ACE Entertainment shingle. Max Siemers, Matthew Janzen and Aubrey Bendix oversaw the project for ACE. The project originated with ACE, which locked in the adaptation rights to Smith’s popular novel, and financed and produced the feature. Lionsgate international handled the sale.
The movie landing at Netflix continues the partnership between the two companies following the massive success of the three films in the “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” franchise. Netflix and ACE have also partnered for the upcoming YA feature “Hello, Goodbye and Everything in Between,” another adaptation of Smith’s work, starring Jordan Fisher and Talia Ryder.
DAILY ECHO – ODDS have been slashed for Bournemouth-born and Dorset raised actor Ben Hardy to become the next James Bond.
According to bookmakers William Hill, the James Bond market has seen significant changes over the last week as fan anticipation grows, and the Eastenders and Bohemian Rhapsody star Hardy is now a likely contender.
Born in Bournemouth in 1991, Ben Hardy grew up in Sherborne and attended Sherborne Abbey Primary School and the Gryphon School. As a student at Gryphon, he found a love for acting after starring in a school film adaptation of Far from the Madding Crowd.
He gained his big break in 2013 when it was announced he would join the cast of Eastenders as Peter Beale. He has since gone on to receive acclaim for his roles in successful films like X-Men: Apocalypse and in 2018’s Bohemian Rhapsody – where he played Queen drummer Roger Taylor.
Following Daniel Craig’s departure from the James Bond series, William Hill prices Hardy at 25-1 to don the famous tuxedo next.
Speaking on the odds, a William Hill spokesperson said: “Although he may be lesser-known than some of the other names in the market, Ben Hardy is a good fit for the role, as he’s shown some serious diversity when switching between soaps and blockbuster films.”
The current frontrunner in the market is Man of Steel and The Witcher star Henry Cavill, who has seen his odds cut to 2-1 in the last week, followed by Bridgerton heartthrob Rege-Jean Page (11-4), and Luther legend Idris Elba (9-2).