The Midnight Sky is a big science fiction film from Netflix that feels all too relatable in telling a human story of survival as humans try to leave planet Earth after it has been rendered uninhabitable by an undisclosed, self-inflicted apocalyptic event. The film’s Contenders Film panel features director-star and producer George Clooney with his cast members Kyle Chandler, Felicity Jones and Demián Bichir.
Along with David Oyelowo and Tiffany Boone, the trio play the crew of an spaceship returning from a two-year trip to the Jupiter moon that will become mankind’s new home. Clooney’s dying character Augustus Lofthouse must warn them to turn around.
Clooney and crew address grounding a big scale sci-fi premise with an inherently human story scripted by The Revenant’s Mark L. Smith; how they broke new sci-fi film ground in staging a death scene of Boone’s character after her space suit is pierced by shrapnel, by showing the manifestation of the fatal wound through blood bubbles that float within her suit, and then within the pod of a spacecraft in zero gravity; the surprise that Jones dropped on Clooney with her pregnancy and how it turned into a creative asset for the film’s plot, and how they managed to work around the limitations of the actress’ pregnancy and have her still present in complicated VFX zero-gravity spacecraft scenes.
There was also the choreography of capturing snow blizzard scenes in Iceland, which sounded as dangerous as it looked onscreen.
Check out the panel video above.