Ice Cube To Star In Untitled Patrick Aiello/Timur Bekmambetov Sci-FI Pic For Universal

Ice Cube, Timur Bekmambetov Mega; AP

EXCLUSIVE: Following the successful Ride Along films and upcoming Flint Strong biopic, Ice Cube and Universal appear to have found their next high-profile project as Cube is set to star in the untitled grounded sci-fi movie for the studio with Patrick Aiello and Timur Bekmambetov producing. Rich Lee will direct from a script by Kenneth Golde.

Plot details are vague other then it being described as a grounded sci-fi film in the vein of District 9already that touches on themes of privacy versus surveillance. Universal has greenlighted the film and has fast tracked it by having it go into production next month.

The talent behind the package already was intriguing to the studio, but what really sealed the deal was the technology that Bekmambetov has been fine-tuning ever since signing his five-picture deal with the studio. The idea behind this format that was part of the presentation is a production that had the look of commercial event film but at the budget of a contained thriller. This new technology will allow for a fully remote production with all actors and crew working from their individual separate locations. So basically if Cube wanted his part of the shoot to be done from his home, it could be done without a problem and with crew working from somewhere else.

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The shoot would be a first of its kind at this scope and is not only done at a lower budget but also provides the safe working environment every studio is trying to achieve during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The presentation impressed Universal so much that the studio aggressively pursued the project immediately afterward.

After taking some time to launch his Big3 basketball league, Cube has been busy getting back in front of the camera in the past year. He was shooting the sports drama Flint Strong for Universal earlier this year, but production was put on halt due to the pandemic. The plan is for that film also to go back into production soon as with insiders saying the studio is very high on it given how timely the themes in the story are.

Cube is represented WME, Prospect Park and Ziffren Brittenham. Golde is repped by Darren Trattner. Lee is with Paradigm and Anonymous Content. Aiello and Bekmambetov are represented by WME.

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