Olatunde Osunsanmi, the director of the found-footage horror project The Fourth Kind, has already announced plans to direct a similar kind of film about a secret mission to the moon, but believe it or not, Timur Bekmambetov is going to beat him to the punch. Bekamambetov will be producing a project from director Trevor Cawood that doesn't just focus on similar secretive missions into space, but is scheduled for a March 2011 release. As in, five months from now. And no, it hasn't yet started shooting.

The press release from the Weinstein Company doesn't explain how any of this is possible, because it's working with the gambit that the film is not a narrative at all, but based on "Russian film footage" that Bekmambetov discovered while shooting a documentary about the Russian space station. The idea is that, while Richard Nixon technically cancelled the Apollo 18 space mission, it actually did take place, and "reveals startling evidence of extraterrestrial life forms." OK, sure. The script comes from Brian Miller, who won the screenplay contest at the Astana International Action Film Festival, which brought him to Bekmambetov's attention.

The low-budget, quickly shot film will likely fall into the Cloverfield/Paranormal Activity of fiction the marketers want you to believe is real, and if the movie is good enough, moviegoers may be wiling to fall into the ruse. I just know I'd be livid if I were Olatunde Osunsanmi-- obviously the two projects were developing at the same time, so there's no real argument that he's been ripped off, but it's going to be a lot harder for him to get his film out there if Bekmambetov's project really does make it out by March of next year.
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