This year will bring to theaters two very different versions of wilderness. Later this month, we'll see Joseph Kosinski's sci-fi thriller Oblivion, which takes place sixty years after the armies of Earth found themselves waging a war against alien invaders, who left the planet utterly destroyed. Then in the fall we'll find out what happened in the aftermath of Sony Pictures' 2009 animated adventure Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, as Flint Lockwood (Bill Hader) returns in the sequel to the abandoned town of Swallow Falls and finds his machine - the FLDSMDFR - has been creating mutated, living animals made out of food.
First up, here is Terry Crews, who has taken over Mr. T's role of Earl Devereaux for Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2, presenting his findings on the town of Swallow Falls and the many species of pun-titled creatures that have evolved there. You can tell that Crews is an authority on the matter, since he has a spinning globe, several shelves full of books, and a quilted smoking jacket.
The basic premise of Oblivion is somewhere between Moon and Wall-E. Jack (Tom Cruise) and Victoria (Angela Riseborough) are two technicians assigned to the long-since evacuated wasteland of Earth with the task of maintaining the drones that roam the planet's surface. The teammates are mere weeks away from leaving Earth and rejoining the rest of the human race, when Jack encounters human survivors - led by Morgan Freeman's character, Beech - who tell him that he and Victoria are operating under false pretenses.
The first of the featurettes for Oblivion is as much an advert for IMAX as it is a promotion of the film. According to Kosinski, the film was shot with IMAX in mind, since the viewing format lends itself well to atmospheric sound design and expansive landscapes, and the director explains that it was his experiences with TRON: Legacy that convinced him to make Oblivion specifically for IMAX. To encourage audiences to see the film as it was intended, Oblivion will be the first ever film to be released in IMAX a full week before general release.
The "beautiful desolation" of Iceland's vast volcanic landscapes was also used for exterior shots in Prometheus and, as seen in the following featurette, shooting on location in Iceland enabled Kosinski to capture the naturally picturesque and highly volatile surroundings, saving him from having to create an entire world in CGI. From the way that the cast and crew describe it, the country sounds like a very rich filming location, so long as you're willing to risk treading on a geyser.
Finally, there's a new clip from Oblivion available that shows Jack exploring the ruins of an old library, only to realise that he is not quite alone in there. We've caught glimpses of this scene in earlier TV spots and trailers and, though it's difficult to make out what Jack is being attacked by, this may be the scene where Jack finds himself kidnapped by Beech and the rest of the survivors.
Two versions of Earth: one blasted to pieces by aliens and one taken over by anthropomorphic food items. One certainly sounds tastier than the other, but which film are you most looking forward to?
Oblivion is out in theaters on April 19, 2013.
Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 lands on September 27, 2013.
Sources: Universal Pictures [via Collider] and Sony Animation