Ridley Scott has been confirmed to direct sci-fi thriller The Martian.

The director will take the helm of Fox's outer space adventure project, which will star Matt Damon as an astronaut stranded on a Mars colony while NASA attempts to mount a rescue.

Writer Simon Kinberg broke the news while speaking on Jeff Goldsmith's podcast, saying that Scott would begin filming The Martian this autumn.

Kinberg originally brought the project - based on Andy Weir's novel of the same name - to director Drew Goddard, but he later dropped out to work on Spider-Man spin-off Sinister Six.