Let's have some real talk about Maz Kanata in Star Wars: The Force Awakens: she stinks. Her design is blah (she has buttholes for eyes when she takes off her glasses!), she's a pointless exposition machine and she clearly once served a different function (otherwise why would Han tell Rey and Finn that this character - who has all of the edginess of a grandmother giving you a tray of fresh baked cookies - takes some getting used to?). Before the film came out many people decried the fact that talented and beautiful Lupita Nyong'o was being stuck behind pixels in the role; at the time I defended JJ Abrams' choice, as I believe motion capture acting is a legitimate form of artistic expression. And then I saw the film.
So let's get a good alien role for Lupita! After all, her beauty is straight up otherworldly. And this time, let's let her be her on camera. That sounds like the plan for Intelligent Life, whose producers are pursuiing her for a leading role as an alien. In the film a guy who works with the UN office dedicated to first contact with sentient alien lifeforms falls in love with a lady... and then discovers she's ET. Lupita in that role is good news. Also good news: the producers are pursuing Selma filmmaker Ava DuVernay to direct.
Less good news: Colin Treverrow and Derek Connolly, the guys behind Jurassic World, are writing. The reports say that the script is more in line with their debut film, the terminally twee Safety Not Guaranteed (which I gave a soft pan here), which is bad news. As I noted in my 2012 review, that film's tone felt ten years out of date six years ago. DuVernay hasn't signed on to the film (she hasn't even been officially offered it yet), but if she does come aboard perhaps she can come at the script and salvage it.