To say “Passengers” has been in the works for years is no exaggeration. Since at least 2010 it has been brewing, with Keanu Reeves—who first commissioned the script from Jon Spaihts after reading his 2007 Black List entry “Shadow 19“—attached, going through a couple iterations, without much success. But steam seems to be building now. Earlier this year, “Game Of Thrones” and “Boardwalk Empire” helmer Brian Kirk signed on to direct, with Reese Witherspoon joining not longer after. Now there’s a casting switcheroo, but nothing that should hold things up.
Rachel McAdams has replaced Witherspoon on the movie, with the actress forced to bow out due to scheduling conflicts. But the movie presses on, with the sci-fi tale centering on a passenger on a spaceship making a centuries-long journey to another planet, who is woken up, accidentally and irreversibly, by a computer glitch, 90 years too early. Faced with the prospect of living the rest of his life, and dying, alone on the ship, he decides to wake up a beautiful fellow passenger. And from there, a pretty distinct love story unfolds.
Production will begin early next year in Germany, with The Weinstein Company already signed up to distribute the picture. It certainly sounds like a pretty great piece of sci-fi, so color us curious, and hopefully Reeves and McAdams have the magic to make it work. [Deadline]