Guillermo del Toro’s giant robots versus monsters blockbuster, Pacific Rim, opens in theaters next month (at the time of writing this); thereafter, the filmmaker will be returning to his supernatural horror roots with Crimson Peak. Story details are, by and large, being kept secret, but del Toro has described the script – which he started out co-writing alongside Matthew Robbins (Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark) and later revised with playwright Lucinda Coxon – as “a ghost story and gothic romance.”

The cast for Crimson Peak has been shaping up quite nicely, between Emma Stone, Charlie Hunnam, Benedict Cumberbatch and – most recently – Jessica Chastain having closed a deal to appear in the film. Unfortunately, Stone had to leave the project due to a scheduling conflict with another movie on her long to-do list; that includes the new rom-com from Cameron Crowe – formerly known as Deep Tiki – and Woody Allen’s currently-untitled next project, which he will shoot in France (with Stone co-starring opposite Colin Firth).

The Wrap is reporting that Mia Wasikowska has entered negotiations to replace Stone in Crimson Peak, well-before principle photography gets started in 2014. Wasikowska – if she signs on – will play a young author named Edith Cushing, who discovers some unpleasant information about her charming husband’s (Hunnam’s character?) past; meanwhile, Cumberbatch and Chastain will portray siblings from an aristocratic family.

Wasikowska is no stranger to either the windswept gothic romance sub-genre or creepy fare in general (see: Jane Eyre, Stoker). The bulk of her upcoming roles will continue to be in more non-mainstream (re: artsy) projects like Jim Jarmusch’s vampire feature Only Lovers Left Alive and David Cronenberg’s Hollywood satire Maps to the Stars; though, she could have at least one big-budget feature in her future, assuming that Wasikowska reprises her role as Alice Kingsleigh in director Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland for Disney’s planned sequel.

As for del Toro: Pacific Rim is looking to deliver on its promise of wonderful geek-tastic entertainment, but the planned sequel will remain a shaky prospect until the opening weekend box office returns are tallied. Regardless of what happens with that film, we’re looking forward to del Toro’s self-described return to pure “scary stuff,” after his “essay on ghosts” with The Devil’s Backbone and the horrific fairy tale elements found in Pan’s Labyrinth.

Crimson Peak is slated to begin filming in the first half of 2014, with part of the production taking place in Toronto. We’ll keep you updated on the project, as more information becomes available.

Source: The Wrap