Universal’s Female Spy Thriller 355 Set for January 2021 Release Date
Universal Pictures has announced that the upcoming spy thriller 355 will be released in theaters on January 15, 2021. Directed by Simon Kinberg, the film stars Jessica Chastain, Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o, Oscar winner Penélope Cruz, Diane Kruger (Inglourious Basterds) and Fan Bingbing (X-Men: Days of Future Past). Kinberg co-wrote the script with Theresa Rebeck (NBC’s Smash, Trouble).
355 follows a group of top female agents from government agencies around the globe as they try to stop an organization from acquiring a deadly weapon to send the world into chaos. The film is produced by Chastain and Kelly Carmichael for Chastain’s Freckle Films and by Kinberg for his Genre Films. The film is executive produced by Richard Hewitt (Bohemian Rhapsody).
The film marks the second directorial effort from Simon Kinberg, who made his debut with Dark Phoenix, and who is well-known for writing three previous films in the X-Men franchise as well as co-writing 2009’s Sherlock Holmes, starring Robert Downey, Jr., and 2012’s Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, starring Benjamin Walker.
Chastain came up with the story idea and crafted it for the film, earning her a “Story by” credit. In an interview with Deadline, Chastain said she was inspired to come up with the story for the project in her time working on The Help, in which she loved working with the “female ensemble” and wanted to bring that environment back to life in the spy genre since Charlie’s Angels.
Chastain was also the driving force behind the cast in the film, having called all of them herself and offered the parts and receiving confirmations from all of them right away. The title, 355, comes from one of the very first spies in the United States during the American Revolution, who was also a woman, so Agent 355 has become slang for those in the CIA for a female spy, which Chastain learned while doing her research for 2012’s Zero Dark Thirty.
In earning her experience in the genre with the acclaimed biographical political thriller, Chastain has set a goal for making the film as authentic and grounded as possible for audience members who work in these agencies to view the film and see the realism in their portrayals, as well as avoiding the campy nature of some other genre entries, such as Angels.
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