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Cannes 2011: Armie Hammer signs on for 2:22

Total Film stepped onto a very nice yacht earlier today to chat to Australian director Paul Currie about new thriller 2:22 .

“It’s a movie about time,” said Currie. “It’s got a love story element like The Adjustment Bureau and a time construct like Source Code . Metaphysical thrillers I think you’d call them. It’s smart, it’s sophisticated.”

Armie Hammer, the breakout star of David Fincher’s The Social Network (where he played the Winklevoss twins) will play Dylan, an air traffic controller who witnesses a strange phenomenon that nearly causes two planes to collide at 2:22pm.

“He comes across some of the people who nearly died and there’s a girl there who he’s very intensely drawn to,” explains Currie. “Each day from then on at 2:22 he finds himself at the same place – Central Station in Sydney…

“He hooks up with this girl, they find there’s some inexplicable link that they have, and what plays out is this hi-concept mystery – what is the answer to 2:22?”

Hammer, who’ll soon be starring opposite Leonardo DiCaprio in Clint Eastwood’s J. Edgar and Julia Roberts in The Brothers Grimm: Snow White , was something of a coup for the director.

“He’s just fabulous and on the rise. We feel like we’ve got an actor who’s really capable of this role and who we think is a movie star – we want the thing to be a high-production value thriller.”

Currie also let slip he’d had “a lot of heat from great actresses that want to play opposite Armie” but wouldn’t name any names, only saying that we can expect an announcement in the next few weeks.

The director also notes “there’ll be a big visual effects element. What’s exciting is that with the whole notion of 2:22, Dylan will be moving to a different time signature, so we’re working on new versions of things like bullet time and having the camera do some pretty amazing things.

“We just want the movie to have a thriller dynamic but with an ethereal grace to it, too.”

So, can we expect to see Currie and Hammer hitting the Croisette next year with some finished footage? “Ideally, yeah,” said Currie. “We’d like to bring it back to the very people who’ve been supporting us.”

2:22 will shoot in Australia this September for a 2012 release.