Zendaya Among Finalists for James Cameron's 'Battle Angel' Movie (Exclusive)
James Cameron and Robert Rodriguez are zeroing in on their female actor to star in Alita: Battle Angel, Fox’s ambitious adaptation of the popular manga graphic novels.
Rodriguez is on board to direct what is envisioned as a big-budget tentpole, while Cameron and his Lightstorm Entertainment partner Jon Landau are producing.
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The movie has not been greenlighted as budgetary issues are still being worked out while the studio seeks to bring it down from the $175 million-$200 million range.
The following trio tested for the film, The Hollywood Reporter has learned: Maika Monroe, who starred in It Follows and will appear in this summer's Independence Day: Resurgence; Rosa Salazar, who appeared in Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials and recently wrapped shooting Warner Bros.’ big-screen take of CHiPs; and Zendaya, the Disney Channel star of K.C. Undercover who is one of the female leads of Spider-Man: Homecoming. Bella Thorne, who starred with Zendaya on the TV series Shake It Up and appeared in Alvin & the Chipmunks: Road Chip, also tested, say sources.
Sources say that Cameron and Rodriguez want to create a star-making vehicle akin to Cameron’s Dark Angel, the TV series that ran from 2000 to 2002 and became a platform for Jessica Alba. Sources also say that Zendaya could be the frontrunner for the role, but that scheduling issues with her hit TV show present a stumbling block.
Alita: Battle Angel tells of a female cyborg that is discovered in a scrapyard by a scientist. With no memory of her previous life except her deadly martial-arts training, the woman becomes a bounty hunter, tracking down criminals. The action-adventure story is meant to serve as a backdrop to themes of self-discovery and the search for love.
A decision on the actresses is expected in the coming weeks.
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