Stylish Icelandic director/producer Baltasar Kormákur’s star is slowly rising on the Hollywood scene. After impressive directorial outings with Contraband and The Deep, Kormákur’s buddy cop action-thriller 2 Guns (which stars Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg) will debut in theaters on August 2nd, placing it squarely within the final stretch of summer blockbuster season.
Though the twisty 2 Guns has yet to make a dime at the box office, Kormákur is pressing ahead with pre-production on his next project – the based-on-a-true-story drama Everest. Apparently not one to aim low, Kormákur has begun courting four well-respected actors to lead the film’s cast: John Hawkes (The Sessions), Jake Gyllenhaal (Source Code), Jason Clarke (Zero Dark Thirty), and Josh Brolin (Oldboy).
Deadline reports that Brolin, Clarke, Gyllenhaal, and Hawkes have all been approached by the production of Everest to headline the movie. If they accept the roles, they will apparently be the primaries in a fairly large ensemble cast.
Everest will chart the real-life story of a doomed expedition to the top of the titular mountain in 1996. After a series of mistakes, a crew of climbers was caught on the peak during a devastating snowstorm. When all was said and done, eight people died during the disaster.
The tragic tale has already been adapted once before as the TV movie Into Thin Air: Death on Everest in 1997. That film was lifted directly from the personal account of author John Krakauer (Into the Wild), who survived the incident. This version of the story will apparently be adapted from a variety of firsthand accounts, survivor interviews, and official reports by newcomer Justin Isbell and veteran screenwriter William Nicholson (Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom).
Though it’s far too early in the production timeline for Everest to get a feel for the project, this first casting news seems promising. While only one of the chosen actors is a household name (and whether Gyllenhaal is really that bankable is up for debate), they are all strong talents with proven track records. If all four do indeed sign on with the film, it will at the very least have a strong, compelling primary cast – something that speaks well to the overall direction of the project.
Everest is in such an early stage of pre-production that it does not have a definitive release date. Keep your eyes on Screen Rant as more about the film develops.