Universal in Talks for 'Everest' With Josh Brolin and Jake Gyllenhaal

Brolin Gyllenhaal Clarke Hawkes Split - P 2013
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Brolin Gyllenhaal Clarke Hawkes Split - P 2013

Jason Clarke and John Hawkes also could star in the film about a tragic attempt to climb the world's tallest mountain.

Everest is ready to be scaled.

Josh Brolin, Jake Gyllenhaal, Jason Clarke and John Hawkes are in various states of negotiations to star in Everest, a based-on-a-true-story tale about the ill-fated 1996 climb to the top of the world's tallest mountain. Universal is in talks to co-finance the film with Emmett/Furla and distribute in North America.

From director Baltasar Kormakur (2 Guns), Everest follows two expedition groups whose treks turn tragic when a massive storm hits, leaving eight people dead.

Working Title is producing and looking at an October shoot in Iceland, which would put Kormakur back on his home turf. The Icelandic director most recently helmed 2 Guns, which is opening in theaters Aug. 2.

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Clarke, who starred in Zero Dark Thirty, would play Rob Hall, a New Zealander who is leading one of the expeditions. Christian Bale had at one time been in talks for the role.

Brolin, who next stars in Spike Lee's Oldboy remake, would play Beck Weathers, a doctor who has to endure a night exposed to the elements.

End of Watch star Gyllenhaal will play Scott Fischer, the leader of another expedition.

Hawkes, who starred in The Sessions, will take on the role of a slow climber from Seattle who causes his expedition to be late in taking off. 

Clarke is repped by CAA, RGM Artist Group and Robert Stein Management; Brolin is repped by CAA; Gyllenhaal by WME; and Hawkes by Innovative Artists and Thruline Entertainment.