Blake Lively has been cast as the lead role in the contemporary big-screen adaptation of the thriller novel, The Rhythm Section. The project is produced by the same people behind the successful James Bond films - EON Productions and IM Global, and will see the 29-year-old star play an assassin. The former is set to finance the project while the latter - which is responsible for the last eight Bond outings - will produce it, with filming set to start this fall.
The Rhythm Section is the first installment from the four-part book series, Stephanie Patrick, written by Mark Burnell. It tackles the story of heroine Stephanie Patrick whose whole family was killed in an airplane crash - a flight which she was also supposed to be on. Upon digging up more information, she finds out that what appeared to be an accident was actually intentional. She then embarks in the world of underground spying in order to uncover the truth behind the incident and avenge the death of her family against those responsible.
The announcement was made via a statement from co-producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli from EON Productions which Variety has received a copy of:
“We are thrilled to be bringing Mark Burnell’s ‘The Rhythm Section’ to the big screen with our partners at IM Global. It is exciting for us to be working with the immensely talented team of director Reed Morano and actress who have a strong vision for this very compelling story driven by a female protagonist.”
Meanwhile, IM Global co-founder Stuart Ford, who is also executive producing, joined alongside Greg Shapiro and Mark Burnell, has also expressed his excitement for the project saying:
“In Stephanie Patrick, Mark has created a unique female heroine who turns so many of the current cinematic clichés surrounding so-called ‘kick-ass’ female leads on their head. To be bringing such a fresh, realistic, and bold international thriller to the big screen with EON Productions, Reed, and Blake is an exciting proposition for us all at IM Global.”
The film's director, Morano, has a slew of great work in her resume including directing several episodes of the hit Hulu series, The Handmaid's Tale. She is also part of the group of filmmakers responsible for Beyonce's critically acclaimed visual album, Lemonade. Aside from The Rhythm Section, she is penciled in to be involved in the sci-fi drama I Think We're Alone Now, with Elle Fanning.
Lively, on the other hand, was most recently seen in 2016's The Shallows and Woody Allen's ensemble film, Cafe Society. The Gossip Girl alum has also nabbed a role in CBS Films' adaptation of The Husband's Secret prior to the announcement of her involvement in The Rhythm Section.