Breakout “House of Gucci” star Madalina Ghenea is set to lead shark survival thriller “Deep Fear” alongside Ed Westwick.

Ghenea, who plays classic movie star Sophia Loren in the fashion film, will take on the role of accomplished yachtswoman Naomi who embarks on a solo trip through the Caribbean to meet her boyfriend Jackson (played by Westwick) in Grenada.

When a storm forces Naomi of course, she encounters survivors of a shipwreck who, it soon transpires, are actually drug traffickers. They force Naomi to dive into the hull of their sunken ship to retrieve their shipment of cocaine, where she encounters a frenzy of vicious tiger sharks, whom she must outwit to survive.

Marcus Adams (“Long Time Dead”) directs a screenplay by Robert Capelli Jr (“The Rules (for Men)”) and Sophia Eptamentis (“Invincible Summer”). Brilliant Pictures’ Sean O’Kelly (“Marin Call”) and Marc Bikindou (“Black Dahlia”) produce alongside Halo Pictures’ Engelbert Grech (“The Raft”) and Chris Bongirne (“W.E.”).

“This script presents the opportunity to create a truly original context for the genre,” says Adams. “The malevolent narcos characters juxtapose acutely with Naomi and Jackson, an earnest and honourable couple who are daring to live their dream of running a yacht chartering business in the West Indies. Essentially ordinary folk thrust into an extraordinary situation, Naomi and Jackson are forced to do combat with both the narcos and one of nature’s most awesome apex predators; creating a three-way battle that elicits tension and fear at every turn. Such a dramatic scenario, set within the breath-taking West Indies, facilitates an incredible opportunity to produce stunning photography both above and below the water. Combined with very latest post-production techniques, that will capture the intense threat of the apex predator, I intend to make ‘Deep Fear’ a heart-in-mouth, white knuckle ride.”

Madalina Ghenea added: “I loved this character from the moment I read the script. Naomi is a fiercely confident, vibrant and highly accomplished young woman – it’s an honour to be playing such an empowering female lead role. I’ve had lots of fun completing a month of intensive diving training in preparation for the role and am super excited to start shooting alongside such a talented team.”

Brilliant Pictures will handle worldwide sales rights.