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David Ayer to Direct Paramount’s Survival Thriller ‘Heart of the Beast’ From Producer Damien Chazelle

David Ayer is following up the success of The Beekeeper with a new dramatic thriller from producer Damien Chazelle.

Ayer is set to direct Paramount Pictures’ Heart of the Beast from a script by Cameron Alexander. The feature, which has been in development since 2017, follows a former Navy SEAL and his combat dog amid their attempt to find civilization after getting stranded deep in the Alaskan terrain.

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Producers include Chazelle and Olivia Hamilton of Wild Chickens Productions, in addition to Ayer and Chris Long of Cedar Park Entertainment.

Ayer most recently helmed Amazon MGM Studios’ The Beekeeper, the Jason Statham-led thriller that surpassed $150 million at the global box office. The filmmaker, who wrote Training Day and worked on the script for The Fast and the Furious, has previously directed Fury, Suicide Squad and Bright.

Chazelle’s directing credits include Whiplash, La La Land, First Man and Babylon. During a recent interview with Ben Mankiewicz on the podcast Talking Pictures, Chazelle addressed his filmmaking future after the underperformance of 2022’s Babylon, which starred Brad Pitt and Margot Robbie.

“Certainly, in financial terms, Babylon didn’t work at all,” said Chazelle, who mentioned that he was working on a new script. “You try to not have that affect what you’re doing creatively, but, at some level, it can’t help but affect it. But maybe that’s OK? I have [a] very mixed mind about it. Who knows? Maybe I won’t be able to get this one made. I have no idea. We’ll have to wait and see.”

Ayer is represented by WME and Sloane Offer. Chazelle is repped by WME and attorney Don Steele.

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