David Cronenberg to Direct Viggo Mortensen, Kirsten Stewart in 'Crimes of the Future'

Brian Welk

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David Cronenberg has set his first directorial feature since 2014, “Crimes of the Future,” with a cast that includes Viggo Mortensen, Léa Seydoux and Kristen Stewart.

“Crimes of the Future” comes from Neon and Serendipity Point Films, with Neon set to release the sci-fi movie in the U.S. Production aims to kick off this August in Athens, Greece.

“Crimes of the Future” is Cronenberg’s first original screenplay since 1999’s “eXistenZ.” The movie is a deep dive into the not-so-distant future where humankind is learning to adapt to its synthetic surroundings and the fast-spreading “Accelerated Evolution Syndrome.” This evolution moves humans beyond their natural state and into a metamorphosis, altering their biological makeup. While some embrace the limitless potential of transhumanism, others attempt to police it.

The film stars Mortensen as Saul Tenser, a beloved performance artist who has embraced Accelerated Evolution Syndrome, sprouting new and unexpected organs in his body. Along with his partner Caprice, Tenser has turned the removal of these organs into a spectacle for his loyal followers to marvel at in real-time theater. But with both the government and a strange subculture taking note, Tenser is forced to consider what would be his most shocking performance of all.

“I have unfinished business with the future,” Cronenberg said in a brief, cryptic statement describing the film. 

Mortensen is reuniting with Cronenberg for the fourth time after starring in “A History of Violence” and “Eastern Promises.” Also starring in the film are Scott Speedman, Welket Bungué, Don McKellar and Lihi Kornowski.

Mile End will distribute “Crimes of the Future” in Canada, and Rocket Science is handling international sales.

“To work with David Cronenberg is to embark on a journey exploring terrain where no one has gone before,” producer Robert Lantos said in a statement. “Each of our collaborations has been an exhilarating adventure and David’s unwavering vision is what real cinema is all about.”

“Crimes of the Future” also marks the fourth time Cronenberg is teaming with Lantos. Steve Solomos is co-producer, and Panos Papahadzis is co-producer for Athens-based Argonauts Productions. Executive producers include Joe Iacono, Thorsten Schumacher, Peter Touche, Christelle Conan, Aida Tannyan, Victor Loewy and Victor Hadida. Bonnie Do and Laura Lanktree are associate producers.

Cronenberg is also reunited on the film with his longtime production designer Carol Spier and three-time Academy Award-winning composer Howard Shore.

Cronenberg last directed “Maps to the Stars” in 2014, and he’s since appeared as an actor in Mortensen’s directorial debut, “Falling,” and in “Star Trek: Discovery.” Seydoux will next be seen in “No Time to Die,” and Stewart is currently filming Pablo Larrain’s “Spencer,” which Neon is also distributing.

Viggo Mortensen is represented by Lynn Rawlins at Rawlins Company, Theresa Peters at United Talent Agency and Stuart Rosenthal at GGSSC. Léa Seydoux is represented by Brian Swardstrom at United Talent Agency, Gregory Weil at Agence Adequat and Dallas Smith at United Agents. William Morris Endeavor represents Kristen Stewart, alongside McKuin Frankel Whitehead. Serendipity Point Films is represented by Richard Thompson and Leigh Brecheen of Brecheen Feldman Breimer Silver & Thompson, LLP.

“Crimes of the Future” is a Serendipity Point Films and Argonauts co-production. The Canada-Greece co-production is produced in association with Ingenious Media, Coficine and Telefilm Canada, with the support of EKOME.

Deadline first reported the news.

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