Jumping from one of television’s most acclaimed dramas to one of Hollywood’s hottest projects, Masters of Sex lead Michael Sheen has joined Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt in Sony’s pricey sci-fi romance Passengers, according to Variety.
The pic, a two-hander, takes place during an interstellar voyage, as thousands of humans lie stationary in cryogenic sleep. When one passenger (Pratt) awakens 90 years before everyone else, he makes the difficult decision to awaken a female passenger (Lawrence) in hopes of gaining some companionship.
Sheen will voice a robot on the spaceship, who provides direction and guidance to Pratt and Lawrence’s characters.
Morten Tyldum, coming off a Best Director Oscar nomination for The Imitation Game, will direct from a script by Jon Spaihts (Doctor Strange), which makes Passengers one of the most talent-packed packages currently set up in Hollywood.
Passengers hasn’t always been in such a fortuitous position, though. Focus was once in talks to acquire domestic distribution rights when Keanu Reeves was attached, and The Weinstein Company was also attached but dropped out later. In terms of actors, Reese Witherspoon and Rachel McAdams both orbited the role Lawrence is now occupying.
Regardless, Sony is not about to let Passengers slip away at this point. Lawrence and Pratt are arguably the two most bankable stars in Hollywood right now, with the former concluding her Hunger Games franchise in grand fashion with this fall’s Mockingjay – Part 2 then reteaming with David O. Russell for biopic Joy (an anticipated awards season vehicle), and the latter having toplined mega-blockbusters Guardians of the Galaxy and Jurassic World. Adding in an Oscar-tipped director, red-hot scribe and now an acclaimed TV actor just adds to Passengers‘ rather insanely stacked deck.