Netflix has begun production on O2, a French survival thriller to be directed by Alexandre Aja and starring Melanie Laurent. Getaway Films’ Vincent Maraval, Brahim Chioua and Noëmie Devide are producing the Black List script by Christie LeBlanc. The film will be released on Netflix in mid-2021. Mathieu Amalric and Malik Zidi have also joined the cast.
This is a project that previously had Noomi Rapace attached to star for director Franck Khalfoun and with Aja producing (Wild Bunch International kicked off sales at the EFM). Prior to that, Anne Hathaway was in the mix. The most recent switch-up marks Aja’s return behind the camera on a French-language project after such U.S.-based films as Crawl, The Hills Have Eyes and Piranha 3D. Aja will also produce alongside longtime associate Gregory Levasseur.
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O2 tells the story of a young woman who wakes up in a medical cryo unit. She doesn’t remember who she is or how she ended up sequestered in a box no larger than a coffin. As she’s running out of oxygen, she must rebuild her memory to find a way out of her nightmare.
Aja says, “After a period spent in lockdown, a project which in its core explores confinement and claustrophobia was a no-brainer, almost a necessity. I am very enthusiastic to collaborate with Wild Bunch and Mélanie Laurent and to begin a beautiful creative adventure with Netflix.”
Vincent Maraval, CEO of Wild Bunch International and Getaway partner adds, “With thanks to Netflix, we are delighted to be able to bring Alexandre Aja back to France. We worked with him on Piranha 3D and are excited to collaborate again on O2: an ambitious film in a genre that French cinema is not often exploring.”
O2 falls under Netflix’s push for local projects, spearheaded by VP of International Film David Kosse who oversees international film production and acquisitions with a focus on making and acquiring non-English language movies for the streaming site. He and Gaëlle Mareschi, Creative Manager, International Original Film, say, “We are extremely excited to be working with French cult director Alexandre Aja, surrounded by a fantastic French cast led by Mélanie Laurent, and brought to us by Vincent Maraval. With O2, Aja is taking us on a thrilling and unexpected ride physically but also emotionally, bringing his imagination to another level.”
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