If you were hoping Jason Statham’s next action flick would be filled with swarms of characters who would help generate a lot of buzz, you’re in luck. Today we learned Statham will bring his usual two-fisted, butt-kicking flavor of acting to a film about a subject that absolutely screams “action thriller” – beekeeping.
That’s right. According to Deadline, Jason Statham will star in The Bee Keeper, described as “a lightning-paced thriller deeply steeped in the mythology of Bee Keeping.” Statham will also act as co-producer on the film, which is currently looking for a director. Deadline says London and Atlanta are being looked at for filming locations, with next September being targeted for a production start.
It’s a little difficult to imagine, at this early date, exactly what the release is referring to when it says Jason Statham’s new film involves the “mythology of Bee Keeping,” though bees and beekeeping do come up a bit in mythology. An essay offered by the Planet Bee Foundation mentions that bees took on different meanings in Greco-Roman myth. For example, bees were associated with death, because wild hives were often found in caves or cracks in rock walls, which many believed to be entrances to the underworld.
In fact, while he’s not as popular the gods of war or the ocean, the ancient Greeks had a god of beekeeping named Aristaeus. The child of the sun god Apollo, Arisateus learned the arts of beekeeping and cheese making and shared them with humanity. So, if critics wind up calling The Bee Keeper “cheesy,” it might actually be meant as a compliment.
If Jason Statham is looking for some major Hollywood names to join him as co-stars, there are a couple of great options. In May, Angelina Jolie posed for a photo while covered with bees to support the Women for Bees program which is looking to help stop the decline of the bee population. So, while other stars might understandably be skittish about the notion of being around a whole bunch of bees – a necessity that is subtly hinted at with the title The Bee Keeper – Jolie will probably respond with, “been there, done that!”
Jason Statham might also manage to recruit one of the greatest voices in the world to join him in The Bee Keeper – Morgan Freeman. In a 2014 episode of The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Freeman confirmed he had recently had bees delivered to his home and had become a beekeeper. He also claimed he didn’t wear protective gear around the bees, joking that wearing it was a “rookie mistake.” According to Forbes, by 2019 Freeman had converted his entire 124-acre Mississippi ranch into a bee sanctuary.
Another candidate might work only if Jason Statham doesn’t have anything against working with social media influencers. Beekeeper Erika Thompson is regularly called in to get entire beehives out of appliances, trash cans, or just about anything you can think of. And just like Freeman claimed while talking to Jimmy Fallon, she usually does it free of protective gear, with the bees crawling all over her hands and arms. While she might not have Statham’s acting cred, the influencer has almost 700,000 followers on Instagram, and 9.4 million followers on TikTok.