The upcoming Netflix film “Irreplaceable You” boasts a female director, screenwriter, cinematographer, and star, a combination that worked well for the streaming service’s three-time Oscar nominee, “Mudbound.” Gugu Mbatha-Raw (“Beauty and the Beast”) plays Abbie, a woman thrilled to finally be marrying her elementary school sweetheart, Sam (Michiel Huisman from “Game of Thrones”), with whom she is expecting a child. At a doctor’s appointment, the couple is devastated to learn that Abbie actually isn’t pregnant: she’s given a terminal cancer diagnosis instead.
Bucking the film’s title, Abbie then resigns to auditioning stand-ins to share a life with Sam. She also attends patient group therapy alongside the alter-egos of Christopher Walken, Kate McKinnon, Steve Coogan, and Tami Sagher (“Don’t Think Twice”). “Irreplaceable You” features sympathetic turns from Brian Tyree Henry (“Atlanta”), Timothy Simons, (“Veep”) and Jacki Weaver (“Silver Linings Playbook”).
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It is the first produced screenplay from Bess Wohl, an actress who has appeared in guest parts on shows such as “Bones” and “CSI: NY.” Director Stephanie Laing has also been given her first opportunity to helm a feature; her resume includes producing credits on “Veep” and “Vice Principals.” Jonathan Tropper — who adapted his bestselling novel “This Is Where I Leave You” into another death-tinged film — is among the producers.
Soon after “Irreplaceable You” debuts on Friday, February 16, Mbatha-Raw will play the mother to Storm Reid’s heroine, Meg, in Disney’s “A Wrinkle in Time.”
Watch the Netflix trailer below.