Having recently tackled the world of haute couture in “Halston,” Ewan McGregor is going to break out his climbing gear to scale the heights in “Everest.”
The high-altitude adventure comes courtesy of Doug Liman, the exacting action auteur behind “The Bourne Identity” and “Edge of Tomorrow,” and will star McGregor as George Mallory, an English mountaineer who took part in the first three British expeditions to Mount Everest. This is, of course, not to be confused with 2015’s “Everest,” a re-telling of the 1996 Mount Everest disaster, when eight climbers caught in a blizzard died while attempting to descend from the summit.
Here’s the official logline: “1921. Everest remains the very last great unconquered challenge on earth. Many have sacrificed their sanity and often their lives in the attempt to reach its fabled summit. George Mallory (McGregor) is picked by the arrogant Arthur Hinks (Strong) of the Royal Geographic Society to scale the impossible. Following the First World War, the fading British empire is desperate for a restorative victory, but for Mallory and his rival, the eccentric Aussie George Finch (Heughan), the challenge of Everest has nothing to do with patriotism, instead it is a singular test of self.”
Academy Award-nominated screenwriter Sheldon Turner (“Up in the Air”) wrote the script, with Sam Heughan (“Outlander”) and Mark Strong (“Cruella”) rounding out the cast. McGregor will next be seen in Disney Plus’ Obi Wan Kenobi series.
The film is inspired by novel “Paths of Glory” by Jeffrey Archer and is produced by Jennifer Klein together with Liman. The film will start shooting in the U.K. and Italy January 2022. HanWay Films is handling international sales and distribution and will commence sales at the upcoming Cannes Virtual Market. UTA Independent Film Group will oversee the US sale.
A release announcing the project describes Liman as a “climbing nut,” and pledges to “create a visceral experience for audiences, one that captures the exhilaration and terror of conquering “Everest.” It all sounds slightly less dangerous than heading into space, which Liman is supposed to do with Tom Cruise and Elon Musk on another project.
Production leads include cinematographer Martin Ruhe (“Midnight Sky”), musician T Bone Burnett (“Crazy Heart”) and production designer Oliver Scholl (“Venom”).
McGregor is represented by UTA, Narrative and Sloane Offer Weber & Dern; Heughan is represented by UTA, United Agents, Viewpoint and Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman, Warren, Richman, Rush, Kaller & Gellman. Strong is represented by WME. Archer is represented by Joel Gotler and Robert Benun.