Original Oldboy helmer Chan-wook Park is making his U.S. directorial debut with Stoker, which is due to hit theaters before the end of 2012. He will also lend a helping hand to fellow Korean filmmaker Joon-ho Bong on the latter's own first English-language project, titled Snow Piercer (which Park will produce).
Captain America himself, Chris Evans, is set to headline the movie, which is based on Bong's screenplay. Evans looks to be in good company, seeing how the likes of award-winners Jamie Bell and Tilda Swinton are currently in the midst of negotiations to co-headline Bong's latest cinematic tale.
Bong spoke to Collider (all the way back in 2009) about Snow Piercer, which he says is based on a French graphic novel titled "Le Transperceneige." Variety has also confirmed that the apocalyptic story takes place "in a new ice age" and revolves around a pack of survivors who are forced to live together on a train. However, even with the world's end upon them, differences in class and social standing still separate the main characters, making it all the more difficult for them to peacefully co-exist with their fellow passengers.
That sounds like the promising setup for a darker character study from Bong, who's best known in the States for his tongue-in-cheek cult classic monster horror flick, The Host. His status as a director has only improved since that 2006 release, thanks to his acclaimed 2009 crime drama Mother, so it's no surprise that Bong's first foray into U.S. filmmaking is attracting some big name talent (much like Park's Stoker has).
Evans, with this move, continues to balance out his Marvel comic book blockbuster roles with more personal indie titles, as he did in 2011 with appearances in The First Avenger and the drug drama Puncture - and will do so again the near future, with roles in The Avengers, The Iceman, and now Snow Piercer. It's a smart strategy, on Evan's part - one that should also allow him to avoid running in circles as an actor (re: end up being typecast).
Bell actually takes a similar approach to selecting his roles as Evans, seeing how the former also likes to balance out parts in big-budget fare such as King Kong and The Adventures of Tintin with roles in more personable productions like Retreat and Jane Eyre. Swinton, of course, generally sticks to non-mainstream parts (her role in the Chronicles of Narnia movies aside) as evidenced by her much-buzzed-about recent turn in We Need to Talk About Kevin and an upcoming role in Wes Anderson's Moonrise Kingdom.
That's all to say: there's an excellent cast being assembled for Bong's Snow Piercer, which is tentatively expected to begin principal photography by March 2012 - so, dedicated movie geeks, you may want to keep an eye out for this one.
Source: Collider, Variety