Australian action thriller “2099: The Soldier Protocol,” starring David Arquette, has been picked up for international sales by Los Angeles-based Spotlight Pictures. Directed by transgender woman Dee McLachlan (“The Jammed”) it will be launched for buyers at the European Film Market.

Boosting the film’s sales potential is an agreement with Vertical Entertainment to release it in North American theaters on  March 27.

The film, released in Australia as “The Wheel,” is the story of a neuroscientist who is forced to take part in a project to build an enhanced human fighting machine. McLachlan, who was born in South Africa and transitioned gender after moving to Australia, weaves in themes of greed, loss and humanity, and questions our compliance in such atrocity, all in the name of science.

The cast also includes Jackson Gallagher (“Playing for Keeps,” “Patrick”) and Kendal Rae (“The Shannara Chronicles,” “Neighbours”). Production is by Melbourne-based shingle SunJive Studios.

“This is a time to recognize the vibrant community of transgender filmmakers who are on the rise and allow stories to be seen through a whole different lens. McLachlan’s work crosses boundaries and, significantly, in this film she blends her unapologetically high impact physical action aesthetic with an emotional heart,” said producers Veronica Sive and Silvio Salom.