The Sexiest Man Alive, one of the most talented actresses working today and a Twilight heartthrob are being brought together for a period-drama. Hugh Jackman, Rachel Weisz and Robert Pattinson (Twilighters go crazy… now!) will star in the 19th century set film Unbound Captives, which is the directorial debut of actress Madeleine Stowe.
The script was co-written by Stowe along with husband Brian Benben back in the early ’90s, but the film never got made after Stowe declined a $5 million deal because she wanted to star in the lead female role herself. Fast forward 15 years, after realizing she would never be able to star in the role, she cast Weisz in the role she originally wanted, and decided to go ahead and direct the film herself.
Weisz will play a woman whose husband is killed and her two children kidnapped by a Comanche war party in 1859. She is rescued by a frontiersman, to be played by Jackman. Pattinson will play [one of] the son[s].
The reason Stowe originally turned down the $5 million (one of the highest amounts offered to a first time screenwriter at the time) was because she didn’t want to be “just the screenwriter.” The project was originally planned to be directed by Ridley Scott and star Russell Crowe in the role Jackman will now play.
Were you crazy, Madeleine?!
In speaking out about her refusing the money (the first time she has done so), Stowe said:
“There was never a moment’s hesitation on my part, but it felt unreal, and I can remember my husband putting a finger across his neck to signal not to take the offer… There are moments in life where you need to follow your heart. The script remained my singular focus, but directing it myself wasn’t something I ever dreamed of.”
“Gil [Netter - producer] made me realize it when he said there isn’t anyone who’s going to make the movie you want to make… I saw three actresses, and knew after meeting with Rachel that she was the person I wanted to hand this role to,” she said. “Robert said yes last fall, before everything broke with ‘Twilight.’ Hugh said yes a couple of weeks ago.”
To help Stowe with her first time directing a feature film, cinematographer John Toll will be photographing the film. He was responsible for how films like Braveheart, The Thin Red Line, The Last Samurai and the recent Tropic Thunder looked. Captives is sure to follow the gorgeously shot nature of those movies.
The film has a great cast, an interesting story that has potential to be very compelling, a great cinematographer has been brought on-board and it’s written by a genuinely talented actress (that doesn’t mean she’ll be a good director, but it’s at least encouraging) – I don’t see any reason not to look forward to this one.
Do you like the sound of Unbound Captives? What do you make of that wicked trio that’s been assembled?
Unbound Captives will be put into production by Hyde Park Entertainment at the end of the year.
Sources: FirstShowing and Variety