Recent horror film The Pyramid put a monster spin on the Egyptian pyramids, and next it will be China’s turn to offer up its most famous landmarks for a supernatural reinterpretation in a currently untitled film about a group of 15th century British soldiers who cross paths with the hurried construction of a section of China’s Great Wall, only to realize that what its designed to keep out isn’t human and is very dangerous.
That, at least, was the synopsis a few years ago when The Last Samurai director Edward Zwick was attached to Legendary Pictures’ Great Wall movie. The project went on hiatus after Zwick dropped out, but regained momentum this year when Chinese director Zhang Yimou (House of Flying Daggers) was brought onboard, and Matt Damon entered talks for the lead role.
Now described as the tale of “an elite force making a last stand for humanity on the world’s most iconic structure,” the Great Wall may be about to add another soldier to its ranks. TheWrap reports that actor Pedro Pascal, who gained widespread attention for his role as Oberyn Martell on the last season of Game of Thrones, is currently in talks for a role, and that Matt Damon is also still in negotiations with Legendary.
The Great Wall is expected to be the largest movie ever shot entirely in China, and Legendary is familiar with the power of the Chinese box office after ticket sales in China accounted for well over a quarter of Pacific Rim‘s total worldwide gross. Even with a largely Western cast, the on-location shoot and focus on China’s history could be enough to score Legendary another hit in the film’s home country.
Although Damon is still in negotiations, TheWrap reports that Bryan Cranston has fallen out since we last reported on his interest in the project. The latest draft of the script was written by veteran thriller screenwriter Tony Gilroy (The Bourne Identity), and the film is being produced by Legendary CEO Thomas Tull and CCO Jon Jashni.
Pascal has been rightfully sought after since appearing on Game of Thrones (he’ll also be appearing in the Ben-Hur remake arriving in 2016) and his involvement certainly makes this project a bit more interesting. Perhaps he’ll run into Jon Snow while he’s up on the Wall.
Legendary’s Untitled Great Wall Project opens in U.S. theaters on November 23rd, 2016