'Maze Runner' Director Wes Ball to Helm 'The First Fifteen Lives Of Harry August' for Amblin

Maze Runner director Wes Ball has landed a new sci-fi film. Ball is set to direct the feature film adaptation of the sci-fi Claire North novel The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August for Amblin Partners, his first feature film project since 2018’s Maze Runner: Death Cure and since 20th Century Fox’s Mouse Guard adaptation fell through.

Deadline reports that Wes Ball is set to direct The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August, a sci-fi story about a man “who is repeatedly born into the same life, remembers all his past experiences, and seeks to save the world by outmaneuvering a similarly gifted rival who’s willing to make any sacrifice to attain a godlike knowledge.”

The film is based on the sci-fi novel by Claire North, which won the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for Best Science Fiction Novel and was nominated for the Arthur C. Clarke Award for Best Science Fiction Novel. Melissa Iqbal (Humans, The Nevers) is adapting the novel for the big screen.

Ball has found great success directing all three Maze Runner films, which grossed almost $949 million worldwide. The YA dystopian franchise put Ball on the map, and he was soon courted by Disney and 20th Century Studios to reboot the Planet of the Apes franchise. However, his passion project, a $170 million animated feature film adaptation of the beloved comic book series Mouse Guard, fell through in the wake of the Disney-Fox merger. But it seems WME, which recently signed Ball to their Oddball Entertainment label, is still working to get the filmmaker jobs — they’re also coordinating the early stages of Ball’s Planet of the Apes reboot.

Ball has a lot of potential as a sci-fi blockbuster director (the Maze Runner movies are solid dystopian flicks) and the Groundhog Day-esque plot of The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August sounds intriguing. Amblin’s involvement is also promising — the company recently earned awards and box office success with Sam Mendes’ Oscar-nominated 1917.

The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August is being produced by Oscar nominees Pete Czernin and Graham Broadbent (Emma, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri) of Blueprint Pictures, which originally optioned and developed the project, and Joe Hartwick Jr (Jumper, The Maze Runner) of Oddball Entertainment.

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