Egyptian actor Amr Waked has announced that he has finished filming his latest venture, the sci-fi thriller Lucy
, by prominent director Luc Besson, in which he was cast opposite Scarlett Johansson and Morgan Freeman.
The film is scheduled for a late 2014 release, but a specific date has not yet been announced.
Waked, popular in Egypt for his diverse roles in films like Yousry Nasrallah's Geneint Al-Asmak (Fish Garden, 2008), Marwan Hamed's Ibrahim Labyad (2009) and Ibrahim El-Batout's El-Sheta Ele Fat (Winter of Discontent, 2012), has already made numerous appearances in a number of successful international films, including Stephen Gaghan's Syriana (2005), HBO's television mini-series House of Saddam (2008) and Steven Soderbergh's Contagion (2011). He also had a prominent role with Ewan McGregor and Emily Blunt in the 2011 British film Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, directed by Lasse Hallström and nominated for three Golden Globes, including Best Motion Picture (Comedy or Musical).
In Besson's Lucy, Waked adds another international role to his resume, playing a French policeman chasing the title character (Johansson), a female drug mule with superpowers. Waked's character is among the major ones in the film, and it marks the first time he plays someone who isn't identified as an Arab (the policeman is identified as French, while of Middle Eastern origin).
Lucy, currently in post-production, started shooting in September and was filmed between France and Taiwan, where eager local paparazzi were resolutely warded off by members of the crew. The film's makers are so far surrounding it with secrecy: no posters, teasers or taglines have yet been released. Besson has dubbed it "a film about pure intelligence."
Besson also directed Le Grand Bleu (The Big Blue, 1988), Léon: The Professional (1994) and The Fifth Element (1997).