VARIETY – Dylan O’Brien, whose credits include “The Maze Runner,” “American Assassin” and “Deepwater Horizon,” and Maika Monroe, who appeared in “It Follows,” “I’m Not Here,” “The Guest” and “The Bling Ring,” will star in Christopher MacBride’s “The Education of Fredrick Fitzell.”

Protagonist Pictures will handle international sales and launch the film to buyers in Cannes, with ICM Partners and Endeavor Content handling North America.

The film is written by and will be directed by MacBride, whose last film was the critically acclaimed found-footage thriller “The Conspiracy.” Lee Kim (“Operation Avalanche,” “I’ll Follow You Down,” “The Conspiracy,” “Small Town Murder Songs”) will produce for Resolute Films. Russell Ackerman and John Schoenfelder of Addictive Pictures are executive producing.

“Fred (O’Brien) is not a detective, a secret agent or a philosopher,” according to a statement. “He’s a normal guy approaching 30 and going through an existential crisis as he finds himself on the precipice of full-blown adulthood.”

It adds: “After a chance encounter with a man forgotten from his youth, Fred literally and metaphorically journeys into his past. He slowly begins to unravel a long hidden mystery about a missing girl, a drug called Mercury, and a terrifying creature that has now followed him into adulthood… As past, present and future begin to intersect and parallel each other, Fred explores all the possible lives he could lead. Which one will he choose?”

“The script is unlike anything I’ve read,” says Kim, who re-unites with MacBride, having worked together on “The Conspiracy.” “Chris has crafted a unique, brilliant story – one that transcends genre and provides a surreal snapshot of a man on the brink of collapse.”

O’Brien was last seen in the final instalment of the “Maze Runner” trilogy – which to date has grossed just shy of a billion dollars worldwide, and Monroe was most recently seen alongside Timothée Chalamet in “Hot Summer Nights,” which premiered at SXSW.

“The Education of Fredrick Fitzell” will start shooting in summer 2018.

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