Sony Pictures released a trailer today for their upcoming science fiction romance “Passengers” starring Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence. Pratt and Lawrence play Jim and Aurora, two of the several thousand passengers on the Starship Avalon, a generation ship heading for a distant planet known as Homestead II.
The trailer reveals that the human cargo are intended to remain in cryo-sleep for 120 years before being awoken at their destination, but something has gone wrong and two passengers awaken early. 90 years early. And the prospect of going back to sleep isn’t possible.
Now they are faced with living out the rest of their lives as the only two awake human beings on the ship. The story could stop there, playing out a romance in space, but that isn’t the end of their troubles. Soon Jim and Aurora are thrust into dangerous scenarios, fighting for their lives and the lives of the thousands onboard with them.
“Passengers” was written by Jon Spaihts and has been in various levels of development since 2007 before finding a home at Sony Pictures. Previous incarnations had Keanu Reeves in Pratt’s role and several actresses in Lawrence’s role including Reese Witherspoon and Emily Blunt.
The film has a budget of $120 million and it’s worth noting that Lawrence’s paycheck is significantly larger than Pratt’s. Lawrence has previously spoken out about the gender pay gap in Hollywood (and the world at large) and at least this time around it seems the tables have turned. Lawrence is taking home $20 million and 30% of the film’s profits against Pratt’s $12 million. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Lawrence negotiated that contract, she certainly has the pull in Hollywood to make that happen. Information leaked during the Sony information hack revealed that Lawrence along with other female actors were, on average, paid much less than their male counterparts. The fact that “Passengers” found a home at Sony probably gave Lawrence the ammunition needed to close the deal.
“Passengers” hits theaters December 21.
Cassidy Ward is a internet writer and author. His short story “The Staircase” is available now on Amazon.