Fox 2000’s long-gestating adaptation of The Mountain Between Us has set sights on Beasts of No Nation‘s Idris Elba for the lead role.
That’s according to The Hollywood Reporter, with the outlet confirming that Elba is circling the part left vacant by Pacific Rim co-star Charlie Hunnam, who was originally attached to the romantic drama opposite Rosamund Pike. Both have since bowed out, leaving the studio scrambling to find replacements in time to ensure production remains on track for a summer shoot. Should Elba close the deal, Fox 2000 will begin casting the net for an actress to play Ashley Knox.
Despite casting changeovers, director Hany Abu-Assad (Paradise Now) remains at the helm for The Mountains Between Us, with a script produced by Rogue One and now 21 Years to Midnight scribe Chris Weitz. He’ll be working from earlier drafts turned in by J. Mills Goodloe and Scott Frank. Given the nature of the beast, the adaptation of Charles Martin’s best-seller requires a winter shoot, meaning Abu-Assad and his crew will be making tracks to the Southern Hemisphere in the next few months.
At its rocky core, The Mountain Between Us is a tragic tale of two survivors cast astray in the wilderness following a plane crash, and the unlikely romance that blossoms thereafter. Elba would play Dr. Ben Payne for the drama, with the novel synopsis revealing that a sudden heart attack spells doom for the pilot and his passengers, sending the jet careering into the High Uintas Wilderness.
Looking further afield, Idris Elba has a number of high-profile roles ready to spring out of post-production, with this summer alone heralding Star Trek Beyond, Finding Dory and Jon Favreau’s The Jungle Book. The Mountain Between Us, meanwhile, is set to be fast-tracked into production later this year – just as soon as that female lead is locked down.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter