Tessa Thompson Will Play a Lucid-Dreaming Fencer In Her Next Movie

Tessa Thompson + swords + lucid dreaming? Say no more. Deadline has the details of the star’s next movie, Balestra, a psychological sci-fi thriller in which she plays a former Olympic fencer who opts for a rather…unorthodox training regime.

Here’s the film’s synopsis, from Deadline:

Balestra follows disgraced competitive fencer Joanna Bathory (Thompson), who is desperately hoping for an Olympic comeback. Pressured by her husband and coach Rafe, she receives a prototype device allowing her to extend her training into her sleeping hours. By day she’s on the piste, and by night she’s lucid dreaming. But reality begins to blur when she encounters a stranger named Elliot (Marwan Kenzari) and gets caught in her own web of subconscious desires and unfulfilling reality.

Working while you sleep thanks to big tech?! HORRIFYING. And while this could just be a fun, winky nod, the fact that Thompson’s character has the same last name as a certain 17th century Hungarian noblewoman/alleged serial killer known as the Blood Countess could hint at even more horrors to come.

According to Deadline, Thompson will also executive produce the film, which will be directed by Nicole Dorsey (Black Conflux) from a screenplay written by Imran Zaidi and an original story by Aron Eli Coleite (Netflix’s Locke & Key). Coleite will executive produce as well, alongside Brian Kavanaugh-Jones and Fred Berger and Rian Cahill (Honey BoyBad Education).

“Like the sport that Balestra explores, the conception of this piece is sharp and riveting – its is a fascinating look at the price of winning, and what trouble dreams can become when our sense of self worth, reality and identity are tethered too tightly to them,” Thompson told Deadline. “To embark on this journey, both in front of the lens and behind it, with Nicole Dorsey and this phenomenal team is a dream to me – a most beautiful one.”

There’s no word yet on other cast-members besides Kenzari (Aladdin’s Jafar), or a release date.


Photo of Tessa Thompson by Gage Skidmore, licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

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