EXCLUSIVE: Jessica Biel (The Sinner) is set to star opposite Xochitl Gomez (Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness) in Ursa Major, a sci-fi thriller from twin brother directors Jonathan and Josh Baker (Kin), which will head into production this fall.
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Patrick Somerville — the Emmy nominee known for creating HBO Max’s Station Eleven, who also co-created Netflix’s Maniac and HBO Max’s Made for Love — wrote the script with Colleen O’Brien and Katie French. Pic is set on an earth-like planet, where a mother (Biel) and daughter (Gomez) fight for survival while hiding from a group of relentless hunters. With the added threat of an imminent and deadly storm, Natalie — now a teenager — begins questioning her mother, Charlie, about who they really are, how they got here, and what they need to do to survive.
Biel takes over the role of Charlie from Critics’ Choice and Independent Spirit Award nominee Mary Elizabeth Winstead, who departed due to scheduling conflicts. Producers on the project include Somerville, David Eisenberg and Stephanie Jacob-Goldman through Tractor Beam, John Finemore through Lost City, Mason Novick through MXN Entertainment, and Allen Fischer and Brian Steinberg through Artists First. Lost City’s James Hoppe and Jack Byrnes are on board as exec producers, in association with exec producers XYZ Films, who are handling worldwide sales.
Biel is a decorated actor-producer who most recently starred as infamous axe murderer Candy Montgomery in Hulu’s true-crime limited series Candy, also exec producing alongside Michelle Purple under their Iron Ocean Productions Banner, with the show securing the best debut of any Hulu title since The Handmaid’s Tale Season 4 in 2021.
Biel scored Emmy, Golden Globe and Critics’ Choice Award nominations for her performance in the first season of USA Network’s acclaimed crime anthology The Sinner, on which she and Purple were EPs. She also previously starred in and produced the drama series Limetown, which premiered on Facebook Watch in 2019 to over 10 million viewers in its first 72 hours.
Biel additionally exec produces the hit series Cruel Summer, which set ratings records for Freeform in its first season and won Best Cable Drama Series from the Hollywood Critics Association. That anthology returns, with a special two-hour premiere, on June 5th.
Biel has also been seen over the years in films that have grossed more than $800M at the worldwide box office — Hitchcock, The Illusionist, New Year’s Eve, Valentine’s Day and The A-Team, among them. She is represented by WME, LBI Entertainment and Yorn, Levine, Barnes.
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