Robert Zemeckis is dipping a toe back into sci-fi production, and he’s bringing Mr. Tom Hanks along for the ride. Zemeckis, who memorably directed Hanks in Cast Away, will be producing an upcoming feature film called Bios, which will star Hanks as (possibly) the only survivor left on Earth after some kind of terrible catastrophe. According to Zemeckis, the film is already scheduled to start filming in early 2019.
“It’s a really cool science-fiction story,” Zemeckis said Monday. “It’s set in a post-apocalytptic world and Tom Hanks may or may not be the last human survivor on the planet.”
Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment is producing the film, with a script by Craig Luck and Ivor Powell. As Spielberg noted, a sci-fi movie with the inherent heart provided by the presence of Tom Hanks makes Bios “very much an Amblin movie.” He went on to say that he could think of “no one more perfect to embody this story about the meaning of being human than Tom Hanks.” High praise indeed, but pretty much what you’d expect, given connections like Saving Private Ryan and The Post.
According to Deadline, “Hanks will portray Finch, the last man on earth, who decides he must plan for the worst by building a robot that could care for his dog if in the event of his death. The canine is the only thing in the world that Finch truly loves. His challenge, however, is programming the robot to “love” the dog and teaching the dog to accept the strange synthetic newcomer as a member of their pack.”
Now that is an interesting, unexpected premise for a sci-fi feature—a movie about a man building a robot to take care of a dog, which will surely delve into the nature of humanity, consciousness and love. It’s hard, of course, not to be immediately reminded of Cast Away, wherein Hanks was likewise stranded alone, forced to rely on a painted volleyball for companionship. Sounds like he might actually be slightly better off in Bios?
Zemeckis is obviously producing, but the film will be directed by Miguel Sapochnik, who in recent years has been known for having directed Game of Thrones’ beloved “Battle of the Bastards” episode. Zemeckis said the following about working with both Hanks and Sapochnik.
“We have a terrific shorthand,” he said, referring to Hanks. “When you work with someone like Tom for so long and on so many things you can’t help but have a shorthand when you’re doing things. We’re always kicking around ideas for movies and stories and things to do. This time I’m not directing, I’m producing, so that’s different. The director is Miguel Sapochnik. He’s a great guy and it’s going to be awesome. It’s a really, really good project.”