In the sci-fi thriller Life, Jake Gyllenhaal will take the starring role as the character Ryan Reynolds was previously set to play. Reynolds agreed to play a supporting character instead. The film also stars the Swedish-born Rebecca Ferguson, who became an overnight sensation for her role in Mission: Impossible—Rogue Nation.
The storyline of this high-profile project centers on a crew at the International Space Station. After retrieving a sample from Mars, the crew discovers potential signs of life that turn out to be more intelligent than expected.
It’s unusual for a leading actor to accept a smaller role shortly before a picture begins filming. According to The Wrap: “Reynolds will be busy filming The Hitman’s Bodyguard (which just got a new director) at the same time Life is in production, so he’s available for fewer shoot days and couldn’t play the lead, though he’s honoring his commitment to the project and staying involved in a supporting capacity.”
Directing the movie is Daniel Espinosa, who last helmed the suspense thriller Child 44. David Ellison and Dana Goldberg (Mission Impossible franchise) are producing, along with Bonnie Curtis (Minority Report) and Julie Lynn (Passengers). The screenplay was written by Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese, who previously teamed up on Deadpool.
We can expect to see a lot of Ferguson in 2016. The in-demand actress has at least three movies premiering this year, including the highly anticipated thriller The Girl on the Train. Rumor has it she will also return as Ilsa Faust in M:16—Mission Impossible later this year.