By Charlie Schmidlin | The Playlist March 20, 2014 at 9:25AM
Before “Prometheus” brought the name of Jon Spaihts to many people’s attention, Keanu Reeves was busy working with the writer on “Passengers” a 2007 Black List-approved project primed as a slice of smart, intimate sci-fi also starring Reeves. The space romance has since encountered many obstacles—first the swap of Rachel McAdams for Reese Witherspoon in the co-lead, and then McAdams’ exit just as The Weinstein Company also dropped its involvement—but at last a bit of optimistic news has arrived.
Principal photography was slated to begin on “Passengers” in just a few weeks, with "Game Of Thrones" director Brian Kirk at the helm, but McAdams’ departure has left producers (including Reeves) searching once more for their female lead. While that integral hunt continues though, The Wrap reports that at least distribution troubles may soon be sorted, as Focus Features looks to take the place of the Weinstein Company to release the film in North America.
Focus haven’t officially inked anything or commented on the deal, but considering the built-up interest around the project despite its difficulties, they’d be justified in their eager position. The romance, which sees Reeves playing a futuristic passenger who’s woken up prematurely from hypersleep only to wake another female traveler up for company, aimed for April 2015 as its release; we’ll likely get the new date soon as Focus makes its decision, and “Passengers” finds its final leading lady.