Ten years since breaking ground for Indonesian audiences with Merantau and his own action franchise with The Raid, action star and actor Iko Uwais has grown ever closer to becoming a more household name in the mainstream market beyond the martial arts niche.
Production is currently underway in Toronto for the new action thriller, Polar following its announcement late last year. Swedish helmer Jonas Åkerlund is directing with a script by Jayson Rothwell that sees actor Mads Mikkelsen leading a cast now confirmed by an exclusive at Deadline that also lists Vanessa Hudgens (High School Musical franchise), Kathryn Winnick (Vikings series) and Matt Lucas (Alice In Wonderland).
Based on the 2013 Dark Horse publication from creator Victor Santos, Mikkelsen stars as the world’s top assassin, Duncan Vizla (a.k.a. The Black Kaizer). Upon settling into retirement looming, he learns his employer sees him as a liability, forcing him back in the game to protect an innocent woman with a squad of younger, faster and hungry killers hot on their tail.
Polar hails from Netflix and Constantin Films whose Robert Kulzer is producing along with Jeremy Bolt and Hartley Gorenstein. Mikkelsen is executive producing next to Dark Horse Entertainment’s Mike Richardson, and Keith Goldberg with Martin Moszkowicz executive producing.
The word as of late is that Sony has begun filming Nikolej Arcel’s latest book adaptation, The Dark Tower, following the recent casting news that’s been building up through now. For this, word via Variety now confirms actress Viking series co-star Kathryn Winnick for her role in the film, though no details have been outlined as of yet.
Adapted for the screen by Arcej along with Anders Thomas Jensen, executive producer Jeff Pinker and producer Akiva Goldsman of Weed Road, Elba and McConaughey will portray the respective roles of post-apocalyptic gun-slinger Roland Deschain, and the villainous man in black. The film is based on King’s popular book series which began with the 1982 publication, “The Gunslinger”, offsetting eight books and several comic book installments that take its inspirational cues from the works of authors Robert Browning and J.R.R. Tolkien, and famed spaghetti western director Sergio Leone.
As per the books, The Dark Tower centers on Elba in the role of the Mid-World’s last gunslinger Roland Deschain whose epic quest to find the all-powerful and mysterious Dark Tower finds him crossing paths with Walter Padick, a.k.a. “The Man In Black”. Joining Elba, McConaughey and Winnick are actors Tom Taylor as Deschain’s protégé Jake Chambers, Fran Kranz who plays Padick’s right hand man, Pimli, and Mad Max: Fury Road co-star, actress Abbey Lee in the role of Tirana, with Jackie Earle Haley starring as a menancing humanoid vampire named Sayre.
The Dark Tower opens on January 13, next year.