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by • July 22, 2011 • Film Festival, News, SDCC 2011Comments (0)4

SDCC: FLOOR REPORT: FOX BRINGS PROMETHEUS, IN TIME, and a closer look at RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES

FOX brought out their big guns to San Diego, showing off footage from Ridley Scott’s PROMETHEUS, a new sci-fi film called IN TIME, and an extended look at THE RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES.

Damon Lindelof moderated the panel and you could tell that his inner fanboy was incredibly excited to be doing so.

Things started off quickly, with the first footage from PROMETHEUS, Ridley Scott’s return to sci-fi after nearly twenty five years. It was a combination of footage from the film, which included Charlize Theron doing push-ups whilst wet and naked, Noomi Rapace with a blowtorch, and Michael Fassbender crying milky tears. All of this takes place with lots of touches from the original ALIEN, albiet a bit cleaner and less run down than in that film: things like the rows of xenomorph eggs, the H.R. Geiger styled sets and worlds, and even the sleeping pods all echoed Scott’s original film.

Along with this, there was behind the scenes footage showing that rather than relying on CG effects, Scott had filled the 007 Soundstage at Pinewood Studios (large enough to house two and a half 747’s) as well as five other stages. This is on top of all the exterior shots, which were being completed in Iceland. Perhaps the most interesting element of this whole sequence was that we learned that PROMETHEUS is being shot in 3D.

Charlize Theron then discussed why she chose to join the film; a combination of wanting work with Scott, Mad Max getting pushed, and being paid a whole lot of money, she joked. She said that her character, Meredith Vickers is “a suit” and “the machine in charge of the machine”. She then surprised everyone by introducing, via satellite, Ridley Scott himself, who was in Iceland, finishing the film and its opening sequences.

Scott said that his experience shooting in 3D was so significant that he never wants to work without it again, even for smaller and more intimate dialogue scenes. While Fassbender’s character appeared to be an android like Bishop in the original film, Scott hinted that there would be “two robots in this film”. Who the other is or might be, I have no clue. Ridley then introduced Noomi Rapace, standing to his right and gushed about how much he loved the Girl With The Dragon Tattoo films and why he had to have her for the project because of that.

I didn’t know a whole lot about this film beforehand, but I’m definitely more intrigued now than I was before.

After that, Lindelof introduced Andrew Niccol, perhaps best known for GATTACA, to talk about his next film, IN TIME (previously called Im.mortal). I would tell you what he said about explaining the universe, but the clip they showed does a much better job of doing it than I do. Check it out blow, courtesy the folks at IGN:

More In Time Videos

The film stars Justin Timberlake and Amanda Seyfried as well as Matt Bomer, Alex Pettyfer, Cillian Murphy, Vincent Kartheiser, Olivia Wilde, and Johnny Galecki. IN TIME seems very reminiscent of GATTACA and also borrows a bit from LOGAN’S RUN. However, the universe is an interesting one and it’s lots of pretty people, so I’m intersted, though I don’t know if that interest is enough to get me to the theater just yet.

Justin Timberlake popped out for a hot second and several panties were creamed and Amanda Seyfried also showed up and while she and her dress were very pretty, she couldn’t really articulate her thoughts on the film.

IN TIME opens October 28th.

The panel closed with Andy Serkis talking more about the motion capture process in RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES, and that Weta has continued to push the technology to a point that now motion capture actors can participate in the scenes without having to be captured in a separate studio afterward. He also made a point to emphasize that motion capture is not a genre, but a tool that can be applied to anyone looking to tell a good story.

They showed one extended sequence from the trailer in which Cesar, the simian star of the film, played by Serkis, attacks a man rather brutally after he gets into a heated argument with James Franco’s character’s father, who is suffering from Alzheimer’s and played by John Lithgow. A second extended sequence showed the Cesar staging a jailbreak and getting all the primates out of their cages.

What was really remarkable was how lifelike the apes looked, particularly in the eyes. I’m still not sold on the movie as a whole, but it’s clear that Weta is now the powerhouse in the effects business.

The panel ended with a sizzle reel from the third act of the film the aforementioned rise in the title. It features monkey vs. horse, windshield vs. manhole cover, and gorilla vs. helicopter action. Check it out at The Playlist.

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