Following the disappointing ticket sales of the much publicized action comedy Hot Pursuit comes news that Reese Witherspoon will star in a very different kind of movie, the big screen astronaut drama called Pale Blue Dot, recently picked up by Fox Searchlight. The Oscar-winning actress will also co-produce the movie, alongside business partner Bruna Papandrea, via their company Pacific Standard.
The screenplay was written by Brian C. Brown and Elliott DiGuiseppi, who previously collaborated on the script for Uncle Shelby, a biopic about author Shel Silverstein. The duo will also executive produce the new movie. Pale Blue Dot is reportedly inspired by the true story of an astronaut love triangle, which was widely covered in the national media. The real life events involved female mission specialist Lisa Nowak, who attempted to kidnap her rival in 2007.
The film will follow a married astronaut who returns to Earth and has an affair with a fellow astronaut. Adding a layer of complexity to the adulterous relationship, the woman suffers from a condition that can afflict people who spend long periods of time in outer space, causing them to view the world as a microscopic place. Her mental state provokes a disastrous reaction to the discovery that her lover has begun another affair with an astronaut trainee.
By delving into the main character’s post-traumatic issues, the movie will explore the notion that extended missions in space affect a person’s grip on reality. The tone of the project has been compared to Foxcatcher and the memorable astronaut feature The Right Stuff.
Prominent director Bennett Miller, best known for Moneyball, expressed interest in directing the picture several months ago but has not yet signed on.