Deep Blue Sea director Renny Harlin takes the helm of a new shark thriller

Deep Blue Sea director Renny Harlin is set to direct the new shark thriller Deep Water, produced by Gene Simmons of Kiss

Gene Simmons of the rock band Kiss must have been a big fan of the 1999 shark thriller Deep Blue Seabecause he has just launched a new production company with Gary Hamilton (so the company is appropriately called Simmons/Hamilton Productions), and the first project he and Hamilton are giving the greenlight is a shark thriller called Deep Water – and they have hired Deep Blue Sea director Renny Harlin to take the helm of the film!

According to Variety, Simmons/Hamilton Productions intends to develop, finance, and produce 25 films over the next 5 years, with “a focus on action, thriller and genre titles with global franchise potential.” A multi-trillion dollar fund manager is providing the financing for their development slate through a revolving finance facility. I don’t even know exactly what that all means, but it sounds good. They’re aiming to make theatrical product that can kick-start franchises.

Deep Water is expected to go into production later this year. The story centers on an eclectic group of international passengers whose plane, en route from Los Angeles to Shanghai, is forced to make an emergency landing in shark-infested waters. The terrified group is forced to work together and overcome their differences if they hope to escape their sinking plane and the frenzy of sharks drawn to the wreckage.

Simmons and Hamilton will be producing the film with Arclight Films’ Ying Ye and Rob Van Norden. Arclight is presenting the project to potential distributors at the Cannes Film Festival.

Harlin, who also directed the airport-set Die Hard 2had this to say about Deep Water: “I’ve had my greatest success when working with planes or sharks. Getting to combine those two of my favorite thriller elements in a character-driven action adventure is a dream come true. I can’t wait to take the audience on the scariest plane ride of their lives. Gene and Gary both are my old friends and I’m excited to rock ‘n’ roll through the friendly skies with them.

Simmons added: “Throughout my storied history in the music business, I’ve met all sorts of characters, but Gary Hamilton is the real deal! He’s a remarkable film executive and a great collaborator who, along with the fantastic team at Arclight Films, brings his expertise and outstanding knowledge of the film industry to this partnership. I am pumped and excited to be launching Deep Water as our first project together with the action maven Renny Harlin at the helm.

And Hamilton provided the following statement: “This exciting new partnership is a beautiful marriage of outstanding production and sales might coupled with a colorful history of showmanship and shrewd business acumen. Gene is not only a talented musician and performer, but he’s also a very savvy businessman and one of the most formidable cinephiles I’ve ever met — he’s the perfect partner as we introduce Deep Water to our buyers in Cannes.

This is a simple decision for me: Renny Harlin plus shark thrills equals me watching this movie as soon as it’s released.

How does Deep Water sound to you? Are you interested in seeing a new Renny Harlin shark thriller? Share your thoughts on this one by leaving a comment below.

Deep Blue Sea