Intriguing-looking project here from Nate Parker, which looks like it gives him an opportunity to flex his abilities, in ways we haven't quite seen yet, based on the trailer below. And that's a good thing!
Described as a survival thriller, the film is titled Eden. It hails from Ombra Films, the same production house that brought us Unknown - the Liam Neeson actioner.
With shades of English author William Golding's Lord of the Flies, the story follows a soccer team, after its plane crashes on a deserted island, as survival instincts take over, leading to divisions into groups, and all the hardships that come with being stranded on a deserted island, become the least of their concerns.
You know how that story usually goes... it becomes less about the elements, and more about what human beings are capable of doing to each other when survival becomes primary.
According to THR, the idea for the film came from Nate Parker, who took it to Hernany Perla, a friend who at the time worked at Liongate and is now an executive at Ombra. They worked to flesh out the story's ideas, and would eventually commission Mark Mavrothalasitis to pen the script.
To help raise funding, Parker directed a short version of the story, and now, over a year later, and the package all coming together, Parker is now getting ready for a July shoot in Malaysia.
“I feel that the whole dynamic of the actor is changing... If you don’t evolve, you will evaporate. I don’t want to be in the position where anyone can pull the plug on my career.”
Indeed! If there's one thing we preach here on S&A is that black actors really should go out of their way to create projects for themselves, instead of waiting for projects to be handed to you. It's obviously easier said than done, but several have had success creating their own path, and I think it's inspiring whenever I read stories like this.
If you're in a position to make something happen for yourself, like Nate Parker is, go for it! He's a *name* so he already has a leg up on most actors (black or from any other group), but I wouldn't be deterred by that. Just do it!
He's right - the word "actor" just doesn't mean what it used to anymore. Now you have to wear several hats.
Joining Parker in the cast are Ethan Peck, Diego Boneta, Eugene Simon and Sung Kang.
Shayam Madiraju, a commercials director, will be making his feature directorial debut with the project.
Collet-Sera, who directed Parker in the upcoming Liam Neeson action thriller Non-Stop, is producing with partner Juan Sola and Perla. Steve Smith is exec producing.
The busy Parker has a few projects on his slate already: an indie titled Nothing Left to Fear, which also stars Anne Heche, Clancy Brown and James Tuper; The Wine of Summer, in which he stars opposite Marcia Gay Harden; and Seven Years, Three Days, another indie being exec produced by Ed Zwick.
Check out the teaser that was shot to help with fundraising, to give you a sense of what's coming: