Cannes: Antonio Banderas to Play Aging Rocker in Simon West's 'Salty' (Exclusive)
Carnaby is offering the South America-set action-comedy to buyers during the Cannes market.
Antonio Banderas is set to put his swashbuckling skills to the test once more, although perhaps in a rather different manner than the efforts he displayed in The Mask of Zorro, Puss in Boots or, most recently, as Burger Beard in The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water.
The actor is set to take the lead in action-comedy Salty, directed by Simon West (Con Air, Tomb Raider, The Expendables 2), playing an aging rock star and reformed sex addict married to a supermodel who is abducted by pirates. The film is being sold in the Cannes market by London-based Carnaby.
Billed as "The Hangover-meets-Spinal Tap" and adapted from the novel by Mark Haskell Smith — the story will see Banderas star as Turk Henry, a bassist for a recently split mega-platinum band who takes his pampered wife on an exotic luxury holiday to Chile only for her to be snatched by a group of renegade ship-less buccaneers trying to raise money to buy a boat. Despite having never organized anything more challenging than a club sandwich from room service, Turk embarks on a rescue mission, navigating the back alleys of Santiago through to the jungles of South America.
Principal photography in set to kick off in Chile in June.
Produced by Simon West Productions, Salty is being produced by Jib Polhemus (Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, Expendables 2, When a Stranger Calls, The Mechanic, Wild Card) and Harry Stourton (Lara Croft: Tomb Raider), with Smith having written the screenplay from his own novel alongside Toby Davies (The Mitchell and Webb Look, Yonderland). Exec producers include Rene Besson (The Mechanic, Drive Angry, Homefront), Hannah Leader (Damascus Cover, Lucky Number Slevin, Before the Devil Knows You're Dead) and Cassian Elwes (Dallas Buyers Club, Lawless, Blue Valentine). Carnaby's Sean O’Kelly (Iron Sky, Damascus Cover, Kids in Love) and Andy Loveday (The Wee Man, Rise of the Footsoldier, Rise of the Krays) are also exec producing.
"Finally three of my passions together — cinema, music and humor" Banderas told The Hollywood Reporter.
Added West: "I'm going to shoot Salty in a style that will exude energy, fun and glamor with elaborate and exciting action sequences very much in the vein of my previous films. With Antonio on board, it’s going to be a phenomenal picture."
Salty broke U.K. records last year when it became largest equity crowdfunded film of all time, inviting members of the British public to own a stake in the film’s profits. It's the first significant Hollywood film to be funded in this way.
Alongside Salty, West also has The Blob remake — starring Samuel L. Jackson — and Iraqi war actioner Thunder Run on his upcoming slate of projects.