Luke Evans joins cast of Roland Emmerich's World War 2 naval action movie 'Midway'
Evans has become the most recent addition to the cast, which already includes the likes of Woody Harrelson and Mandy Moore.
After starring as antagonist Owen Shaw in 'Fast & Furious 6' in 2013, as well as, in Disney's live-action adaptation of 'Beauty and the Beast,' Luke Evans is set to play a leading role in Roland Emmerich's 'Midway' alongside Mandy Moore ('Dr. Dolittle 2,' 'The Princess Diaries') and Woody Harrelson ('War for the Planet of the Apes', 'Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri').
Emmerich, who is renowned for helming disaster films such as 'Independence Day,' it's 2016 sequel 'Independence Day: Resurgence,' 'The Day After Tomorrow,' and '2012,' and whose films have grossed over $3 billion worldwide — he's the country's 11th highest-grossing director of all-time — will look to work his magic on this latest project as well.
The film will chronicle the infamous Battle of Midway, a decisive naval battle between the Americans and the Japanese in the Pacific Theater of World War II that occurred just six months after Japan's devastating attack on Pearl Harbor and one month after the Battle of the Coral, and which would eventually swing the war in the U.S's favor.
The United States Navy under Admirals Chester Nimitz, Frank Jack Fletcher, and Raymond A. Spruance defeated an attacking fleet of the Imperial Japanese Navy and inflicted fatal damage to the fleet, resulting in military historian John Keegan calling it "the most stunning and decisive blow in the history of naval warfare."
According to the Hollywood Reporter, for Emmerich's adaptation, Evans will be taking on the role of Commander Wade McClusky, who would go on to win a Naval Cross for his role in the battle. Harrelson will be portraying Nimitz, while it is still unclear what character Moore has been chosen to play.
However, this will not be the first time that a filmmaker has attempted to portray the historically significant event on screen. In 1976, Jack Smight directed 'Battle of Midway' from a screenplay by Donald S. Sanford, with the film featuring an international cast of stars including Hal Holbrook, Henry Fonda, Robert Wagner, and Cliff Robertson.
Though critics did not receive it very well, citing cliched dialogues and incorrect representations of key scenes, it proved to be extremely popular with audiences, earning over $43 million at the time and becoming the 10th most popular movie of the year. Emmerich will hope that his most recent adaptation manages to get the best of both worlds.
Starlight Entertainment Group and Providence Entertainment Limited will be financing the Emmerich's project, with it set to begin shooting in Montreal. Lionsgate will be distributing the film domestically through its Summit Entertainment banner while Bona Film Group, responsible for producing the Liam Neeson-starring 'The Commuter' has been announced as the distributor for China.