David Twohy and Vin Diesel may be prepping to blow the doors off their cult Riddick franchise with the Merc City TV show along with a fourth – and possibly R-rated – movie, but the former is keeping busy beyond the realm of Furyans and galactic mercenaries, after Variety brings word that Twohy has been tapped to write and direct Ice Moon Rising.
Remaining in the sci-fi genre for the time being, the outlet notes that Ice Moon Rising has been hatched as an American-Chinese co-production, and will chronicle a daring space mission to Europa, one of Jupiter’s many moons that has enchanted scientists and stargazers for generations.
That’s because Europa is said to house massive oceans beneath its icy exterior, and Twohy’s feature will extrapolate that scientific reality and craft a plot involving alien creatures and wayward astronauts. Bound for Jupiter’s satellite, the Chinese and American task force must defrost an astronaut who has slipped into cryogenic stasis for over two decades, only to be confronted by his wife and a daughter he’s never meet after his crude awakening.
Said to be tethered with a production budget in the $50 million ballpark, Ice Moon Rising producer Sriram Das notes that the science featured in the movie “will be very real and not overly futuristic,” with much of the space hardware being designed by ex-NASA scientists. Production is expected to begin later this year in either the UK or Canada, meaning it shouldn’t be too long before casting details begin to emerge for Twohy’s genre piece.
Ice Moon Rising is currently incubating in the early stages of development. That places Twohy and Diesel’s Riddick movie Furia on the back-burner for the time being, though that’s hardly surprising considering the latter has ties to Universal’s monstrous Fast and Furious franchise, along with the rebooted xXx series.