This 'Experiment' has actors getting steamed


Things are heating up for Val Kilmer, Armand Assante, Eric Roberts, Megan Brown and Patrick Muldoon in the indie suspense thriller "The Steam Experiment."

The feature, revolving around six people trapped and terrorized in an urban Turkish bathhouse, marks a return to directing for its Cinepro Pictures producer Philippe Martinez.

Kilmer plays a former university professor who overheats his hostages to prove that humans will devolve into chaos under the pressures of global warming. He tells a detective (Assante) that their location will be revealed if his hypothesis is printed as the local paper's front-page headline.

The six potential victims are a former pro football player (Roberts), a former actress (Brown), a nurse (Muldoon), a waitress (Eve Mauro), a restaurateur (Quinn Duffy) and a writer (Cordelia Reynolds). As temperatures rise, the desperate detainees fight for survival.

Rob Malkani ("Day Zero") wrote the original screenplay. Karinne Behr, Luc Campeau, Neil Steinberg, Steelbridge Finance, Rob Malkani, Stephen Bannon and Trevor Drinkwater are executive producing.

The film is set in Grand Rapids, Mich., and recently began principal photography in the city.

"It will be an interesting journey into the darkness of human nature when confronted with a crisis situation," Martinez said.

The helmer, who owns the financially troubled (and now inactive) Bauer Martinez Studios and its library, worked with Assante as co-writer and director of the 2003 drama "Citizen Verdict." He took on the same roles in the 2004 Jean-Claude Van Damme action thriller "Wake of Death."

Kilmer is repped by ICM, Assante is repped by Stone Manners Agency and Larry Hummel, and Roberts is repped by ICM and Teitelbaum Artists Group. (partialdiff)