After serving as Christopher Nolan‘s longtime director of photography on nearly every one of his films, Wally Pfister is stepping up as the lead director on his own movie, a new science fiction movie named ‘Transcendence’, set to premier in 2014, starring Johnny Depp. The film is based on a screenplay by Jake Paglen, who is also currently scripting the sequel to ‘Prometheus’ for Ridley Scott. Succeeding Pfister as director of photography is Jess Hall (‘The Spectacular Now’).
In addition to Depp, the cast includes Morgan Freeman, Cillian Murphy (both from Nolan’s ‘Batman’ trilogy), Rebecca Hall (‘Iron Man 3’) and Paul Bettany (er, all the ‘Iron Man’ movies). So in a way, minus Depp, it’s a gathering of super hero vets.
Here is the plot synopsis:
Dr. Will Caster (Johnny Depp) is the foremost researcher in the field of Artificial Intelligence, working to create a sentient machine that combines the collective intelligence of everything ever known with the full range of human emotions. His highly controversial experiments have made him famous, but they have also made him the prime target of anti-technology extremists who will do whatever it takes to stop him. However, in their attempt to destroy Will, they inadvertently become the catalyst for him to succeed—to be a participant in his own transcendence. For his wife Evelyn (Rebecca Hall) and best friend Max Waters (Paul Bettany), both fellow researchers, the question is not if they can…but if they should. Their worst fears are realized as Will’s thirst for knowledge evolves into a seemingly omnipresent quest for power, to what end is unknown. The only thing that is becoming terrifyingly clear is there may be no way to stop him.
If you ask me, this sounds like a very welcome change for Depp. He’s appeared almost exclusively in quirky films as quirky characters from his frequent collaborations with Tim Burton to his ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ franchise to his most recent box office bomb ‘The Lone Ranger’. In a strangely ironic way, it’ll be nice to see Depp in a more down-to-earth role, even if that role is in a futuristic sci-fi thriller.
What do you think? Does this sound like something you can get behind.