Last year, Ridley Scott’s adaptation of Andy Weir’s The Martian proved to be a smashing success, both critically and at the box office, after grossing $630 million worldwide. And now, 20th Century Fox is hoping to recreate that magic again; and while the Prometheus filmmaker is set to collaborate with the aforementioned author and studio on a currently untitled project, Scott’s son will be making his feature directorial debut with his own sci-fi thriller much sooner.
Written by Seth W. Owen and directed by Luke Scott, Morgan follows a corporate risk-management consultant (Kate Mara) who is dispatched to a top-secret location, where she is to investigate and evaluate a terrifying accident, only to later learn that it was triggered by a seemingly innocent "human." As the plot unravels, Mara’s character faces the difficult decision as to whether or not to terminate an artificial being (Anya Taylor-Joy), presenting a mystery of both infinite promise and incalculable danger.
20th Century Fox has released a teaser trailer for the forthcoming feature, which explores the issue of a creation surpassing its creator. In the short clip, it is explained that the artificial being (dubbed Morgan) has been engineered with enhanced strength and has been rapidly evolving ever since, now reaching a point that "exceeds our wildest expectations," according to an unseen character.
We barely catch a glimpse of the synthetic life form in the teaser, but director Luke Scott recently shared some additional insight into the character, played by Taylor-Joy (via EW):
“Her capacity for intelligence is far greater than the average human being… But without giving too much away, we can develop a creature which has all of these physical attributes, but what about the emotion and what it means to be a human? That is something that cannot be implanted, it has to be learned.”
By the sounds of it, this has been quite a large character for relative newcomer Taylor-Joy to take on, but the actress also seems quite well suited to the role, especially after her impressive performance in The Witch (which was released in theaters earlier this year), whereby she received high praise and acclaim. In addition to Mara in the lead role, the cast includes Rose Leslie, Paul Giamatti and Boyd Holbrook in unspecified roles.
Set to release on Labor Day weekend, the feature faces some competition from the drama The Light Between Oceans and Relativity’s thriller Solace when it opens in theaters. Rather promisingly though, there seems to be shades of Ex Machina in Seth Owens’ script, which landed on the ‘Black List’ as one of the top unproduced screenplays in 2014 - and with Ridley Scott serving as one of the producers, Morgan could turn out to be another major success for the studio.
Morgan will be released in U.S. theaters on September 2nd, 2016.