Jeff Daniels Boards Ridley Scott’s The Martian Opposite Matt Damon

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On the heels of recent word that said both Jessica Chastain and Michael Pena are eyeing potential roles in Ridley Scott’s The Martian, comes a story from The Hollywood Reporter that reveals that Jeff Daniels has signed on to play the head of NASA. They also report that Kristen Wiig now joins Chastain, Pena and Kate Mara on the list of talent currently in talks to star opposite leading man Matt Damon.

The Martian is based on Andy Weir’s 2012 e-book publication, which issued a print edition this past February. It is officially described as follows:

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars.

Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first person to die there.

After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive.

Chances are, though, he won’t have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain-old “human error” are much more likely to kill him first.

But Mark isn’t ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?

Simon Kinberg and Aditya Sood are attached to produce The Martian.

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