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Sci-Fi Epic ‘Oblivion’ Loses Jessica Chastain, Gains Two New Stars

Before 2011, we knew little of Jessica Chastain, but her roles in The Help, The Tree of Life, and The Debt (among others) helped her become one of Hollywood’s new “it” girls. Naturally, the actress had offers left and right, and while she seemed committed to Universal’s sci-fi epic once known as Oblivion, it appears she’s changed her mind.

The Golden Golbe nominee (and Oscar nod hopeful) had signed on to star in Joseph Kosinski’s (Tron: Legacy) currently untitled post-apocalyptic flick alongside Tom Cruise, but will star in Kathryn Bigelow’s upcoming film about the death of Osama bin Laden instead. Variety relays that Chastain’s tight schedule can’t handle both projects, so she’s chosen to bid farewell to the the would-be blockbuster.

Meanwhile, Kosinski has found Chastain’s replacement and cast the film’s final major role. Olga Kurylenko, who tested for Chastain’s role, has inherited the part of Cruise’s wife. Kurlyenko’s face and name should be familiar to James Bond fans as she starred in Quantum of Solace. She also just completed her work on Terrence Malick’s latest film.

Andrea Riseborough, however, hasn’t even been mentioned in regards to this film until now. In fact, this will be her first American project; you can catch her later this year in Madonna’s period drama W.E. as Wallis Simpson. In this film she’ll play the part of the mysterious woman who Cruise’s character discovers in a crash-landed pod, the event that sends the entire story into motion.

The film formerly known as Oblivion formerly known as Horizons formerly known as Oblivion again focuses on a soldier living on a futuristic Earth, the surface of which has been obliterated by aliens. Michael Arndt (Toy Story 3, Little Miss Sunshine) is currently rewriting the film’s script, drafts of which were penned by Karl Gajdusek (Trespass) and William Monahan (The Departed).

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