DISCLAIMER: Forgive me if I have tons of spelling errors and nonsensical sentences in my SDCC coverage, but I’m trying to pay attention, take notes, and write my coverage while my laptop battery quickly dies as it struggles to run the WiFi here at the Con and let me tell you, this is insane, especially since even between panels, the announcers NEVER SHUT UP. I promise, I’ll proof this later.
First, let me tell you that 20th Century Fox has released two posters for the sci-fi thriller The Day the Earth Stood Still, which you can see here below.
Sitting here in Hall H this morning at the San Diego Comic-Con, the lights go dim and statics appears on the HD screens. After a few seconds, we hear the classic phrase, Klaatu barada nikto.
That opened the panel for Fox’s The Day The Earth Stood Still, which had stars Keanu Reeves and Jennifer Connelly, as well as director Scott Derrickson, and producer Erwin Slott.
The biggest concern from fans about this remake of the 1951 Robert Wise scifi classic is the protective robot Gort. Derrickson said that a lot of planning went into updating Gort for today’s audiences, but that in the end, the new design — which is currently being worked on by WETA — does not stray far from the original.
Three clips were shown from the film, which hits theaters December 12, 2008, one of which was an extended scene from the trailer of Gort shooting off a blast from his eyes. The clip emphasized Gort’s role as an instrument of enforcement.
Another clip shown, called “The Interrogation,” in which we see the alien Klaatu in human form (Reeves) being brought into a compound where he’s being held in custody. He had asked to speak with world leaders, but was denied. Instead, he’s hooked up to a lie detector test. After a few short questions, Klaatu suggests to the tester, “You should let me go.” Then sparks fly and the tester becomes the interrogated, with Klaatu in control. Klaatu starts asking him questions on how to get out of the compound. The last question is “What size is that suit?” and then we see the guards outside the door clasping their heads in agony as Klaatu walks out wearing the tester’s suit.
After the clip, Reeves revealed that his Klaatu is not the “cuddly” version that Michael Rennie played in the black and white original. We were also told that the Klaatu we see in the clips — in human form — will not necessarily be what we initially see of the alien. The last clip shown was of Klaatu riding in the back of a pick-up truck with Jacob (Jaden Smith), the young stepson of Jennifer Connelly’s Dr. Helen Benson (in the original, it was Helen’s son and his name was Bobby). We see that Klaatu and the boy have formed a relationship, and that Klaatu might be regretting a decision he made earlier in the film.
The final clip was very similar to the previously released trailer, and while not all of the effects were completed on it, it is meant to be an example of the “feel” of the film. Derrickson said that he wanted his remake to be more biological and ecological in feel, and that it’s logical to assume that advanced alien civilizations would probably not use industrial technology, considering how it’s now known the damage it can cause to the environment. The clip also shows what looks like biological-type spheres that have landed all over the Earth.
Derrickson said that at the heart of the film is the relationship humans have with each other and how humanity is special.