×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Tom Hughes, Milla Jovovich Starring in Swashbuckler ‘Corto Maltese’

Tom Hughes and Mila Jovovich will star in the swashbuckling adventure movie “Corto Maltese” with French director Christophe Gans attached.

Gans, whose credits include the French “Beauty and the Beast,” “Silent Hill” and “Brotherhood of the Wolf,” will direct from a script by William Schneider. Samuel Hadida is producing the film through his Davis Films alongside Spain’s production and distribution company TriPictures. Christian Mercuri’s Capstone Group is starting sales at the American Film Market.

Producers see “Corto Maltese” as a potential mass-appeal franchise starter similar to the “Indiana Jones,” “Sherlock Holmes” and “Pirates of the Caribbean” franchises. The movie is based on the stories of an adventurous sailor, created by comic book author and novelist Hugo Pratt and set at the dawn of the 20th Century. Principal photography is slated to begin in January in Europe and China.

In the film, Corto Maltese has been hired by a Chinese revolutionary group to hijack the armored train of the Russian Emperor Czar Nicolas II that is transporting his gold from St. Petersburg to Vladivostok with multiple schemes to capture this priceless treasure.

“ ‘Corto Maltese’ has been a dream project for me since I was a boy reading comics,” said Gans. “Now that I have the opportunity to bring this incredible story to the big screen, I can think of no better actor to play the adventurous Corto after meeting with Tom Hughes, whom I followed in the TV series ‘Victoria,’ and who has emerged as one of Britain’s truly top actors.”

Gans also said he’s been talks with “Crazy Rich Asians” star Michelle Yeoh for a role. He’s also cast James Thierrée as Corto’s sidekick, Rasputin, and has also cast Mark Dacascos.

Hadida said of Thierrée, “Not only is he the grandson of Charlie Chaplin, he is also an incredible actor and performer who won a French César for best actor in ‘Chocolat.’ He is currently playing opposite Vincent Cassel in L’Empereur de Paris.’

“We are assembling a brilliant and talented cast to bring Corto Maltese to life,” Hadida said. “I have known Milla Jovovich for a long time, having produced the ‘Resident Evil’ films that made her a star.  After meeting her with Gans, Milla immediately found her vision to play this role and we are convinced that there could be no better choice.”

Gans has collaborated with Metropolitan Films and Davis Films on “Crying Freeman,” “Brotherhood of the Wolf” and “Silent Hill.”

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Aaron Janus Lionsgate

    Lionsgate Hires 'A Quiet Place' Producer Aaron Janus as Senior VP of Production

    Lionsgate has hired Aaron Janus as its new senior vice president of production and promoted Meredith Wieck to the post of vice president of production.  Prior to Lionsgate, Janus served as Platinum Dunes’ head of development, where he oversaw filmmakers Brad Fuller, Andrew Form and Michael Bane. There, he brought in “A Quiet Place,” on [...]

  • Ang Lee Reveals First Look at

    Ang Lee on 'Gemini Man' and De-Aging Will Smith

    On paper, Ang Lee’s “Gemini Man” is a standard-issue, shoot ’em up with Will Smith playing a deadly assassin who must battle a younger clone of himself. The explosions and gun battles aren’t what drew Lee to the project, even if they’re the reason that most people will show up at theaters when it opens [...]

  • Hopper Reserve

    Dennis Hopper's Dying Wish: His Own Strain of Marijuana

    Even as celebrity brands are starting to flood the emerging Cannabis market, Hopper Reserve stands out. The brand was launched by Marin Hopper, Dennis Hopper’s daughter from his marriage to Brooke Hayward. Hopper Reserve is a gram of California indoor-grown flower, two packs of rolling papers, a pair of matches and a trading card either [...]

  • Sean Clarke Aardman Staff Photography Bristol.Pic

    Aardman Appoints Sean Clarke as New Managing Director

    Aardman, the Oscar-winning animation studio behind “Chicken Run” and “Early Man,” has appointed Sean Clarke as its new managing director, replacing co-founder David Sproxton, who is stepping down after 43 years. Clarke has worked at the British studio for more than 20 years, including heading the international rights and marketing department for over a decade. [...]

  • The Antenna

    Toronto Film Review: 'The Antenna'

    Jump scares, creepy noises and the tease of hidden-from-view dangers are all fine. But a truly frightening horror film unsettles with more than its crafts, but instead through the vulnerability of defenseless people stuck with bad options only. First-time writer-director Orçun Behram’s highly stylized and mildly disturbing “The Antenna,” a metaphor on Turkey’s current ruling [...]

  • Ad Astra Box Office

    Box Office Battle: 'Ad Astra' Takes on 'Rambo: Last Blood' and 'Downton Abbey'

    “Hustlers” and “Good Boys” proved that even in the age of Marvel dominance and remake mania, movies that don’t exist within an established franchise can still be box office draws. Can “Ad Astra” continue that trend? The space drama — starring Brad Pitt and directed by James Gray — arrives on the big screen this [...]

  • Harvey Weinstein Accuser Lucia Evans Breaks

    Harvey Weinstein Accuser Lucia Evans Breaks Silence After D.A. Dropped Charge

    Lucia Evans gave a wrenching account on Tuesday of her efforts to hold Harvey Weinstein responsible for sexual assault, saying she felt betrayed after the Manhattan D.A.’s office dropped her allegations last year. Evans spoke to Variety after giving a speech at a conference on influencer fraud in Manhattan, making her first public comments on [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content