Updated: This casting has now been confirmed (press release below), with Stallone and Schwarzenegger teaming up yet again for the prison-break thriller.
Sylvester Stallone is a busy guy these days – the stalwart of ‘80s action cinema is putting the finishing touches on The Expendables 2 and has already lined up another big film in the form of The Tomb. Today’s update brings news of a potential director for the project and the possibility of a fellow ‘80s action icon joining the cast.
On the directorial front, sources say filmmaker Mikael Hafstrom is currently circling the project. Hafstrom is probably best known for directing the Stephen King adaptation 1408 and the exorcism thriller The Rite, but he’s worked outside of the genre as well. Hafstrom has reportedly been interested in the project for some time – but hasn’t been able to seal the deal since Stallone has been busy in Bulgaria with Expendables 2 filming. With that production winding down, it seems likely that Hafstrom could officially land the gig in the very near future.
The more interesting news here involves a potential bit of casting sure to please fans of ‘80s action cinema. AICN is reporting that Arnold Schwarzenegger may very well reunite with Stallone for the film. Sources tell Deadline that the talks haven’t advanced very far yet, but that Schwarzenegger has been approached. Arnold is familiar with the film, since he considered tackling the lead role at one point – the role that Stallone is now playing.
The story finds Stallone playing a man who designs a high-tech prison that is said to be escape-proof. When he’s framed for a crime, he must find a way to break out of the very building he designed.
The Tomb has had a long development cycle – not only was Schwarzenegger offered the project at one point, but Bruce Willis was also attached to star with Antoine Fuqua directing in an earlier incarnation. It appears likely that this Stallone version will get made – the real question is will Schwarzenegger be joining him.
Los Angeles, CA – February 8, 2012 – It was announced today that Arnold Schwarzenegger will star opposite Sylvester Stallone in the action/thriller THE TOMB, which will be directed by Swedish filmmaker Mikael Håfström.
An Emmett-Furla Films/Mark Canton production, the film is produced by Atmosphere Entertainment chairman Mark Canton (300, IMMORTALS), Randall Emmett (LAY THE FAVORITE, RAMBO), George Furla (LAY THE FAVORITE, RAMBO), Robbie Brenner (MACHINE GUN PREACHER, A PERFECT GETAWAY), and Kevin King-Templeton (THE EXPENDABLES, RAMBO, ROCKY BALBOA). Emmett/Furla Films is financing the project. Summit holds worldwide distribution rights to THE TOMB and will release the film in North America.
Written by Miles Chapman for the screen, with a rewrite by Jason Keller, THE TOMB follows Ray Breslin (Stallone) who is the world’s foremost authority on structural security. He’s analyzed every high security prison and has gained a vast array of survival skills. But all Ray’s ingenuity and knowledge are about to be put to work in the most challenging test he's ever faced: escaping from the master prison of his own design.
Schwarzenegger, in the role of Church, plays a complex inmate with multiple shades of grey. He’s the guy who fights to keep the prisoners from losing their humanity in their darkest hour as they struggle together to stay alive
THE TOMB, which Brenner had originally set up as a spec script at Summit will be shot in Louisiana this spring.
"I am thrilled to be making THE TOMB with two film icons – Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger," said producer Mark Canton. "It is the perfect pairing for this high octane thriller. Robbie Brenner, Emmett/Furla, Kevin King-Templeton and I have been working long and hard with Summit to bring them together for this dynamic project."
Schwarzenegger and Stallone will next be seen on screen together in THE EXPENDABLES 2, which is currently in post-production and will be released this summer by Lionsgate. Schwarzenegger just wrapped filming THE LAST STAND, produced by Lorenzo di Bonaventura and directed by Jee-woon Kim.
Håfström recently directed horror film THE RITE starring Anthony Hopkins for New Line Cinema and Warner Bros. He also directed 2010’s SHANGHAI starring John Cusack; the Jennifer Aniston, Clive Owen thriller DERAILED; MGM’s 1408 starring John Cusak and Samuel L. Jackson, and the Swedish drama EVIL.