Photo credit: Jaguar PS /

Even without one of the leading stars and the director from the original film, the sequel to ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’ (simply titled ‘The Huntsman’) is still moving forward and with a passion. The film has now added Academy Award nominee Jessica Chastain to their star studded cast.

Best known for her roles in ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ and ‘The Help’ (roles that earned her the Oscar noms), Chastain has lately been doing quite a bit of work within the genre. The actress starred in the horror film ‘Mama’ as well as in the sci-fi film ‘Interstellar.’ She will be next seen in Guillermo del Toro’s gothic horror film ‘Crimson Peak’ and is currently filming Ridley Scott’s adaptation of ‘The Martian.’

While Chastain’s role in the film is unknown, she will be joining Chris Hemsworth and Charlize Theron who will be reprising their characters as the Huntsman and Ravenna.

Written by Frank Darabont, ‘The Huntsman’ is actually a prequel to the first film and will take place at a time long before the Huntsman met Snow White. It’s rumored that it will center on how the Huntsman and Queen Ravenna first met as he sent out to search for a stolen magic mirror. Emily Blunt will play the film’s villainess, the Snow Queen, who just happens to be Ravenna’s evil sister.

While it was initially reported that none of the dwarves from the first film would be returning, it seems that may now noy be the case. Nick Frost apparently has worked out a deal with Universal and he is now confirmed to return. There is no word yet if any of the other dwarves will be hi ho-ing it back to work.

Not only did Darabout write the screenplay for ‘The Huntsman,’ he was set to direct the film but left due to “creative differences.’ Universal has since replaced him with Cedric Nicolas-Troyan who earned a Visual Effects Oscar nomination for this work on the first film. This will be Nicolas-Troyan’s directorial debut.

It will be interesting to see how ‘The Huntsman’ progresses. The first film was a star studded visual extravaganza so I wouldn’t be surprised if more big names will be added to the cast in the coming months. With a release date aimed for April 22, 2016 production should be starting in the next few months so expect more news as the months come along.

Source: Deadline