Monaghan, Rodriguez cast in 'Fortuna'

Grim future vision of collapsed economy, climate

Just in time for the next depression, Dominic Monaghan and Freddy Rodriguez star in a horror thriller offering one potential solution to our economic problems.

Set in 2100, "Fortuna" envisions an Earth where a collapsed economy and climate crises have eliminated the middle class, leaving a few very wealthy and the teeming masses in severe poverty. To give hope and avoid revolt, the elite create Fortuna, a mysterious game where one in a thousand wins a big payday and joins the upper classes. But their hidden goal to "reduce poverty" by 30% over 50 years comes with a deadly price tag.

Monaghan, Rodriguez and "Fortuna" writer-director Barthelemy Grossmann will play desperate men who play the game in a nearby tower, despite apprehensions that none of its contestants are ever seen again.

The privately financed film will be produced by Laurent Zilber and co-produced by Scott Duncan. It marks the sophomore feature and English-language debut of Swiss helmer Grossmann, whose debut "13 m2" hit French theaters last year.

The six-week "Fortuna" shoot begins Nov. 10 in Sofia, Bulgaria. Desolate, ghettolike sets are being built for a film Zilber compares to 1973's postapocalyptic thriller "Soylent Green."

APA-repped Monaghan is best known for his roles in the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy and ABC's "Lost." Former "Six Feet Under" star Rodriguez, repped by ICM and Kass Stokes Management, will next be seen in Overture's "Nothing Like the Holidays."