AFM ’11: ‘The Last Days on Mars’ a Good Version of ‘Apollo 18′?

Irish helmer Ruairi Robinson – one of my favorite indie/commercial directors – is set to direct his first feature film The Last Days on Mars, based on a script by Clive Dawson, which Focus Features Intl. will be pre-selling to buyers at the American Film Market this week, reports Variety.

The thriller, which was previously titled The Animators, “follows the story of an astronaut crew on Mars on the verge of a major breakthrough having collected rock specimens that reveal microscopic evidence of life.

In their last hours on the planet, two astronauts go back to a cavernous valley on the surface of Mars to collect further evidence for their discovery, but a routine excavation turns deadly when one of them falls to his death and his body is taken as a host and re-animated by the very life form they sought to discover.

Pic is skedded to lense in early 2012 on location in Jordan and Shepperton Studios in the U.K.