EXCLUSIVE: Neon and Serendipity Point Films have set a summer production start in Athens, Greece for Crimes of the Future, the David Cronenberg-written and -directed sci-fi thriller that has locked Viggo Mortensen, Léa Seydoux and Kristen Stewart as its stars, with Scott Speedman, Welket Bungué, Don McKellar and Lihi Kornowski also starring. Latter is the breakout star of the Israeli series Losing Alice on Apple+.
This is the first original sci-fi script by Cronenberg since 1999’s eXistenZ. It sounds just as ambitious, taking a deep dive into the not-so-distant future where humankind is learning to adapt to its synthetic surroundings. This evolution moves humans beyond their natural state and into a metamorphosis, altering their biological makeup. While some embrace the limitless potential of trans-humanism, others attempt to police it. Either way, “Accelerated Evolution Syndrome” is spreading fast. Saul Tenser is a beloved performance artist who has embraced Accelerated Evolution Syndrome, sprouting new and unexpected organs in his body. Along with his partner Caprice, Tenser has turned the removal of these organs into a spectacle for his loyal followers to marvel at in real-time theatre. But with both the government and a strange subculture taking note, Tenser is forced to consider what would be his most shocking performance of all.
“I have unfinished business with the future,” Cronenberg understated.
“To work with David Cronenberg is to embark on a journey exploring terrain where no one has gone before,” said Robert Lantos, who’s producing. “Each of our collaborations has been an exhilarating adventure and David’s unwavering vision is what real cinema is all about.”
The film has been in the mix for some time, gaining attention in that it marks the fourth teaming of Cronenberg with Mortensen, including the terrific films A History of Violence and Eastern Promises. It’s real now, with Neon set to release in the U.S, as the film joins the distributor’s growing slate of recent acquisitions that include Jonas Poher Rasmussen’s Flee, the Ryan Gosling-starrer The Actor and Pablo Larraín’s Spencer.
MK2│Mile End will distribute Crimes of the Future in Canada; Rocket Science is handling international sales.
Crimes of the Future is also the fourth collaboration between Lantos and Cronenberg, who teamed on Eastern Promises, eXistenZ and Crash. Steve Solomos is co-producer, and Panos Papahadzis is co-producer for Athens-based Argonauts Productions. Executive producers include Joe Iacono, Thorsten Schumacher, Peter Touche, Christelle Conan, Aida Tannyan, Victor Loewy and Victor Hadida. Bonnie Do and Laura Lanktree are associate producers.
Aside from Mortensen and Lantos, Cronenberg has surrounded himself with longtime collaborators that include production designer Carol Spier (Crash, Dead Ringers), and Oscar-winning composer Howard Shore (A History of Violence).
Cronenberg is repped by WME; Mortensen is repped by Rawlins Company, UTA and GGSSC; Seydoux is repped by UTA, Agence Adequat and United Agents; and Stewart by WME and McKuin Frankel Whitehead. Speedman, whose credits include Lena Dunham’s Sharp Stick and Netflix’s You, is repped by CAA and Speedman is CAA and GGA. Kornowski is repped by ICM Partners, Grandview and Israel-based Perry Kafri Agency. Serendipity Point Films is repped by Brecheen Feldman Breimer Silver & Thompson.
Crimes of the Future is a Serendipity Point Films and Argonauts co-production. This Canada-Greece co-production is produced in association with Ingenious Media, Coficine and Telefilm Canada, with the support of EKOME.