I’m excited that the Wachowskis are pulling a Malick on us and doubling up projects, not to mention returning to sci-fi in a big way. Cloud Atlas is the time and universe-traversing adaptation of a palindromic novel by David Mitchell, which just recently wrapped. Coming after that is their very hush-hush project, Jupiter Ascending, which is said to be big and franchisable and full of gooey fiction of the science variety. Not much is otherwise known about the project.

But, if the LA Times is on the right track, then it turns out the Wachowski’s big return to straight sci-fi may be Natalie Portman’s return to the screen in general. You may have noticed her absence from the cineplex after a huge glut of the (port)many projects she’d filled up in the hopper before she got knocked up and won an Oscar. Now that her kid has likely reached some point of… I don’t know… not almost dying all the time? (I don’t know how those things work.) Anyway, now that she’s ready to take another gig, word is that she’s strongly considering signing onto Jupiter Ascending, which would put her back in partnership with the Wachowskis, who produced (and heavily influenced) V For Vendetta. This is something she might cram in before the inevitable Thor 2, which still needs to attach a new director, having walked two of their HBO candidates*.

Remember that Portman was attached to Cuaron’s Gravity before Bullock took the role, so maybe the timing will be right for her on this particular space epic (if that’s at all what Ascending is). If not, we may see her help make a documentary about vegans, Eating Animals, based on a book by Jonathan Safran Foer.

So as her baby learns that there are things to eat aside from tit, Mama’s rows are being filled with ducks, scripts are being read, and contracts being considered. I’m sure we’ll hear something conclusive soon.

*Portman is reportedly in on the conversation, because the dismissal of Patty Jenkins pissed her off so much.

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(via /Film)