A few of your favorite Oscar-winning ladies have a new movie in the works, and it sounds epic. According to Deadline, the upcoming film 355 will bring together Jessica Chastain, Lupita Nyong'o, Marion Cotillard, Penelope Cruz, and Fan Bingbing for an international spy thriller that could rival a certain other numbered agent's previous films.
The upcoming movie, which was written by Smash creator Theresa Rebeck (a woman who knows a thing or two about sexism in Hollywood, according to her powerful essay available via Entertainment Weekly) was actually the brainchild of Chastain. The Zero Dark Thirty actress brought the idea to Simon Kinberg, who will direct the upcoming feature.
Chastain told Deadline:
"I love the Bourne movies, the Mission: Impossible films, and wondered why, except for Charlie’s Angels, there hadn’t been a true female ensemble action-thriller spy film. That got my wheels going, along with the idea of casting actresses from all over the world to truly make it an international project. I realized the incredible creative freedom we would have with that."
And what a group to assemble. Nyong'o, who won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar in 2014 for 12 Years A Slave, comes off the massively successful Black Panther. Cruz just gave a praised performance as Donatella Versace on the sophomore season of American Crime Story. Bingbing became the only Chinese star to top Forbes' list of highest-paid actresses in 2016. This is a group of women who, separately, have achieved so much. Put them together, and make them spies? I'm almost unsure if the world can handle it.
If you were wondering what, exactly, the title is referring to, it's a reference to quite a powerful moniker. Chastain told Deadline:
"Agent 355 was the code name of a female spy during the American Revolution. She was one of the very first spies for the United States, and her identity is still unknown. For a lot of women who work in the CIA and other organizations like that, Code 355 is a universal slang term for female spy. It’s the invisible woman who was never named."
Let's hope this film puts women where they belong: in the forefront.