James McAvoy to Star in Wim Wenders’ Romantic Thriller ‘Submergence’

Film is based on J.M. Ledgard’s acclaimed novel, which has been adapted by Erin Dignam

James McAvoy is set to star Wim Wenders’ romantic thriller “Submergence,” which Erin Dignam has adapted from J.M. Ledgard’s acclaimed novel of the same name, it was announced Monday by producer Cameron Lamb and Joel Thibout of Backup Media.

Lamb will produce via Lila 9th Productions, and Paris-based Backup Media will finance the movie. The filmmakers hope to start production in March in Europe and Africa. UTA Independent Film Group packaged the project and will be representing U.S. rights.

“Sumbergence” follows two lovers — immersed in life or death situations and separated by thousands of miles — who find solace in memories of their intense romance the previous Christmas following a chance encounter on a beach on the Atlantic coast. James Moore (McAvoy), enduring captivity by jihadist fighters in Somalia, and Danielle Flinders, exploring the greatest depths of the ocean floor from her submersible, persevere in the desperate hope that they will reunite.

“Submergence” received rave reviews upon publication and was ranked second on New York Magazine’s list of the Best Ten Books of 2013. It was also named to NPR Books’ Best Books of 2013 as well as the NY Times’ 100 Notable Books of 2013.

McAvoy recently wrapped 20th Century Fox’s “X-Men: Apocalypse” and next stars as the title character in the studio’s upcoming release “Victor Frankenstein.” He’s currently filming M. Night Shyamalan’s “Split,” and will next begin production on “The Coldest City” with Charlize Theron.

McAvoy is represented by UTA, United Agents and Sloane, Offer, Weber & Dern.