The Australian desert. A dangerous and damaged future. A hardened loner. From that description you would think we're talking about a new MAD MAX film, but you'd be wrong. We're talking about David Michod's THE ROVER, an upcoming thriller starring Guy Pearce and Robert Pattinson that was just picked up for US theatrical distribution by A24.
The film was written by Michod and based on a story conceived by Michod and Joel Edgerton. THE ROVER was produced by Liz Watts for Porchlight Film and David Linde under his Lava Bear Films banner, along with Michod, and co-stars Scoot McNairy, David Field, Anthony Hayes, Gillian Jones and Susan Prior.
THE ROVER is set in a world ten years following the collapse of the western economic system, where Australia’s mineral resources have drawn the desperados and dangerous to its shores. With society in decline, the rule of law has disintegrated and life is cheap. The film follows hardened loner Eric (Pearce), who travels the desolate towns and roads of the Australian outback. When a gang of thieves steals his car they leave behind the wounded Rey (Pattinson) in their wake. Forcing Rey to help track the gang, Eric will go to any lengths to take back the one thing that matters to him.
Michod says that comparisons to MAD MAX are likely, due to the Australian desert setting, but feels that his film is in a different vein, saying:
"You put cars in the desert in Australia and people are going to think of Mad Max. And with all due respect to that film — and I stress that — I think The Rover is going to be way more chillingly authentic and menacing."
Sounds good to me!
A24 negotiated the deal with UTA Independent Film Group on behalf of the filmmakers and FilmNation Entertainment. Prior to selling the U.S. rights to A24, FilmNation Entertainment licensed the film to a majority of territories worldwide based on selectively showing a two-minute reel of footage from the film.
The film was shot this spring on location in the deserts of South Australia, and is currently in post-production in Sydney. Village Roadshow will release the film in Australia and New Zealand. We'll keep you updated as to when you'll see THE ROVER hit North American theaters.