Natalie Portman Circles Alex Garland's 'Annihilation'

Natalie Portman is reportedly in early talks to star in "Annihilation," director Alex Garland's followup to his celebrated "Ex Machina," Variety reports.

The Paramount Pictures film is based on Jeff VanderMeer's 2014 sci-fi/horror novel -- the first book in his Southern Reach Trilogy -- about a biologist who leads a four-person scientific expedition into Area X, a territory cut off from civilization. There, she must face a mysterious contamination, disappearing colleagues and a being she names the Crawler, while searching for clues about what happened to the previous expedition, which included her husband.

Garland ("28 Days Later," "Sunshine") wrote the screenplay. Scott Rudin is producing.According to Variety, sources point to "everyone from Julianne Moore to Tilda Swinton" as potential co-stars, but Paramount won't make any moves until Portman's deal is in place.

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