Andrew Niccol Rounds Up Orlando Bloom, Vincent Cassel And Olga Kurylenko For A Bit Of Sci-Fi Fun

Andrew Niccol directed Gattaca and Lord of War – tick, tick – but also Simone – big question mark, vague tick in pencil perhaps. On the other hand, he also scripted The Truman Show – giant gold tick. I think, looking at my balance sheet, his projects are well worth getting excited for.

His next film The Cross has a rather modest $24 million budget, dredged from Australian, French and German coffers, so even while it is a sci-fi action thriller, don't expect a raft of expensive FX work. That's not a warning of course – I mean, who cares? – but it's a detail that might help you position this film in a subgenre more accurately.

Orlando Bloom (seemingly unpopular) will star as a man attempting to cross somekind of as-yet unexplained Border; Vincent Cassel (seemingly eccentric) will play the sentry who wants to stop him; Olga Kurylenko (seemingly allergic to clothes) will likely be a love interest, and might even double cross Bloom's character because, let's face facts, that title has to have more than two meanings, right?

One of these meanings, I'm convinced, will tie into the stations of the cross and the travails of Jesus as he too attempted to do what he wasn't allowed or supposed to. Niccol has already been acknowledged by academics for his exploration of/obsession with Christian imagery – with Michael Foley's Plato, Christianity, and the Cinematic Craft of Andrew Niccol being perhaps the boldest dive into this particular deep end.

Variety report that Kinology are out at the EFM (yep, that again) trying to sell distribution rights to The Cross and others. One of their more interesting offerings will be Johnnie To's Vengeance in which Johnny Hallyday (!) will play a hitman-turned-chef.

Hitman-turned-chef...? We've had that one before, and at least once. What is it people like about that idea? Perhaps it's time for a chef-turned-hitman – may I suggest Gordon Ramsay for the role, Mr. Richie?