As the first half of the Sony Pictures presentation (the Zombieland panel) came to an end, Woody Harrelson, who was a part the panel, helped lead into the second half, for another movie he’s also a part of: 2012.

2012 is the latest world destruction film by writer/director Roland Emmerich.

Upon being introduced on stage, he received the following opening question from the host: “Why do you hate this planet so much?”

A fair question since his previous films include Independence Day and The Day After Tomorrow. I loved Independence Day when it came out but felt the complete opposite for The Day After Tomorrow.

He explained that he obviously doesn’t hate the world, that he loves it and that’s why he makes fun movies about destroying it. I guess there’s no sensible answer to that sort of question.

Without wasting any time, they quickly moved to presenting a brand new trailer. It included some more interesting plot development that takes place before the decimation begins. The second half of trailer was mostly stuff we’d seen before in the last 2012 trailer.

Next up, we got another brand new scene from the film that Emmerich said was only 70% finished. If that’s accurate then I’m madly impressed. The scene takes place when the destruction first begins in California and John Cusack is attempting to rescue them and drive through the armageddon with his limo.

It was insanely over the top but a great visual spectacle. The vast majority was CGI and I must give the director credit for giving us an action sequence with ridiculously awesome special effects that we can actually see. The sequence gave great shots that let us, the viewers, see EVERYTHING that was happening (completely unlike the Transformers films).

Emmerich explains that they had to create everything in this sequence (and many others) completely from scratch. They tried to do practical shots for the limo scene but it was incredibly restrictive and didn’t allow them to do what they wanted to – They quickly realized it wasn’t possible and went for CG.

Up until this point, I’ve had pretty close to zero expectation from this film and most others seemed to have mixed reaction from Emmerich’s history. For me, this last two directorial stints; 10,000 BC and The Day After Tomorrow were awful and I didn’t want to see any more. But, having seen this latest footage, I think this movie will be more fun and a better visual viewing experience than the last two.

In the discussion afterwards, Emmerich said he’s done with disaster movies and that next, he’s working on Foundation, his favorite science fiction piece of all time.

If you want to see a light visual sci-fi thriller/drama, check out 2012. I think I’ll be giving it a chance.

See the world fall apart on November 13, 2009.