This afternoon in Comic Con’s Hall H, screenwriter and Lost co-creator Damon Lindeloff, joined by star Charlize Theron, presented a short behind the scenes look at Ridley Scott’s much rumored Prometheus. The panel also included a special visit live via satellite from Sir Ridley himself, as well as cast member Noomi Rapace, all the way from the movie’s set in Iceland. To find out more about what was screened and discussed, check out the rest of the article after the jump!
Unfortunately, since both 20th Century Fox and Comic Con are extremely strict about keeping the footage shown at the con exclusive for attendees, we can’t share the footage that was shown in the hall. I’ll do my best to describe it, however…
What was shown was essentially a behind the scenes look at the production thus far, featuring interview footage with Mr. Scott, and quick cuts of some of the completed shots, including massive set pieces which were expertly lit, rivaling the insanely impressive lighting setups of the first Alien film. There were plenty of other similarities to his 1979 masterpiece, including vast biomechanical sets with an influence from creature impressario H.R. Geiger. We also saw glass syringes with what look like little extraterrestrial larvae swimming in green goo. Other quick cuts revealed a spaceship approaching a giant, ringed, grey gas planet. There were also foreboding shots of crew members looking at each other menacingly, and several shots involving flamethrowers.
Additionally, we saw several shots of the film’s cast members, which included Guy Pearce in a glowing orange spacesuit, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’s Noomey Rapace looking soaking wet and scarier than ever, The Wire’s Idris Elba piloting some kind of planetary rover (also reminiscent of Alien), and Charlize Theron doing pushups in the nude!
Over the footage, Ridley Scott explained that the rumors surrounding this film indicating that it would be a prequel to Alien were only slightly true. ”It’s not exactly Alien, but the creatures in this film include some of the DNA from the original creature.” He said that he was more interested in creating a hostile environment that could literally eviscerate the crew at any moment. ”What I really want to do is scare the living shit out of you.”
Ms. Theron went on to explain how she came to be on the film. She said that they had offered her a role, but she was scheduled to film a Mad Max remake on the other side of the globe. But when that film’s schedule pushed, she was suddenly available, and jumped at the chance to work on Prometheus. She described her character as a suit, and a scientist. She runs a tight ship, and you can tell that she’s going to be a problem.” I, for one, am eager to see her show off her range in another dark role. But I’m also glad that they didn’t have to ugly her up to justify it (yeah, Monster and North Country, I’m talking about you).
Lindeloff was happy to surprise the audience with a live transmission of Ridley Scott, joined by Noomi Rapace, as they stood atop a waterfall set in Iceland, where they were concluding the film’s shoot (the beginning of the story, incidentally). When asked why it had taken him so long to return to the science fiction genre, Scott replied, “I was just too busy making other movies and exploring other genres…until I realized that there was something about the first Alien, that no one answered the questions about, and I thought, ‘that could be the centerpiece of what we’ve just created.’ But still, we’ve gone in another direction, but in the last few minutes of the movie, you’ll understand what I’m talking about.
Scott also discussed that the film is being shot in 3-D. He said, “3-D has been a wonderful exercise…I was brought up as a camera op, so it’s all about lensing, and creating a look” He added, “I’ll never wrok without 3-D again, even for small dialogue scenes. 3-D Opens up the universe.” He also talked about the advantages of using practical set design and special effects. He said, “If you can do it live, do it live. It’ll always be better than anything else. And even though we’ve got all these digital capabilities, I continue do the same…it’s also cheaper.”
When asked by Lindeloff (who penned the script) about the challenges of filming this movie, Miss Rapace said, “It feels really weird to come back to Earth again. We started in early March, in space, and it’s been long, hard days, both physically and emotionally. But it’s been amazing– The best journey ever. Thanks to this man. When I read the script, I was thrilled. When we started to work, I went into it, I completely forgot about everything else, and it felt like we were discovering something that I haven’t been in before. My respect for him has been growing every day, and I come home smiling.”
The way the panel described the film was very encouraging, and it sounds and looks like a return to form for Ridley Scott. I wish I could describe the footage better, but they were rapid fire, and densely packed with intricate set design and alien awesomeness too cool to let me be a responsible journalist. However, speaking as a movie fan, I can definitely say that this movie looks like it is going to be SUPER COOL!!! Let’s hope a real trailer isn’t far behind.