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UPDATE: The Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets Trailer is Here!

We are less than a year away from release of Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets

We’re less than a year away from Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets release

So, OK, I guess it’s time for the Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets trailer to arrive. And what a trailer it is. Look, I’m a sucker for ‘Fifth Element’ Luc Besson, and judging from the trailer, it looks like were headed for something of a similar nature.

Hero Jump / Landing? Check. Lots of crazy aliens? Check. Some romance? Check. I’m definitely starting to get very excited about this. It’s been a little over a decade (2005’s Angel-A) since Besson directed something more than mildly interesting, so here’s to hoping this one sings.

Original Post 10-5-16: Time-traveling French Space Opera Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets Swipes Original Rouge One Composer Alexander Desplat

As soon as Alexander Desplat announced he would no longer be composing the score for Rouge One: A Star Wars Story, fans and reporters began cultivating their own conspiracy theories. The film has had its fair share of road blocks over the past year, including extensive reshoots that necessitated a new composer due to supposed time constrictions on Desplat’s behalf.Now, it seems as though we’ve discovered the root of those time constrictions. Desplat has moved on from the Star Wars universe to Luc Besson’s city of a thousand planets. Besson, director and co-writer of fantastic French sci-fi adventure The Fifth Element is back for a whimsical comic book space-opera. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (“Valérian et la Cité des mille planets” in French) is an upcoming film based on popular 1960’s French comic book series Valérian and Laureline, written by Pierre Christin and illustrated by Jean-Claude Mézières. The series, which was announced on Besson’s twitter in 2015, has sold 10 million copies and has been translated into 21 languages.

What is the plot of the original graphic novel series “Valerian and Laureline”?

The series followed the adventures of 28th-century government space-time agent Valerian and his colleague, Laureline. Together they adventure through the universe completing missions and saving people. “Valerian is a classical hero, kind-hearted, strong and brave who follows the orders of his superiors even if he feels, deep down, that it is the wrong thing to do. On the other hand, his partner Laureline combines her superior intelligence, determination, and independence with sex-appeal,” reads the character description of the two heroes.

What is the cultural significance of the series?

The time-travelling space adventure graphic novel is regarded as a revolutionary work of European graphic novels that is both influenced by classic science fiction, pop culture, and combines it with a time-travel space opera. The hilarious series is peppered through and through by Christin’s humanist and left-wing liberal political ideas, and with Besson as director, I imagine we’ll experience some similar themes. The series has influenced huge sci-fi films including Star Wars, the Fifth Element, and Avatar. It seems like Valerian is a perfect match for the production team: Besson, a long-time fan of the series and highly lauded sci-fi director, and Desplat, a talented and whimsical sci-fi composer.

Can we expect any notable actors to lead Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets?

Cara Delevingne (the Enchantress from Suicide Squad!) is starring as the brilliant red-headed time agent, Laureline, and Dane DeHaan (Harry Osborne from The Amazing Spiderman 2?!) as the titular raven-haired Valerian. I’m excited to see how Besson transforms these two detestable comic book villains into lovable and honest heroes. In addition to those big names, the film also landed pop singer Rihanna for an unknown role.

What direction is Besson taking the film in?

This “nutty blast of pure imagination” previewed a glimpse at one of its finished scenes at Comic-Con this year, and from one reporter’s description, the film sounds epically fun. In the scene,  Valerian is shown running down the halls of a spaceship while Laureline is acting as a navigator over his communicator. But oh no, she’s lead him to a dead end! Not to worry, Valerian “activates” his space suit which “transforms” around his head and allows him to run straight through walls. He does this repeatedly until he bursts through a wall with nothing on the other side. Valerian whips out his gun and  shoots little pods he uses to bounce off in mid-air*. Everyone who saw the clip said it looked super awesome, and now that we’re only 8 months out from the release date we’re crossing our fingers for a trailer release at New York Comic-Con! Only time will tell.

All the way back in October of 2014, it was announced that Keanu Reeves was coming onboard the Replicas movie project, an indie sci-fi thriller. The movie was being produced Lotus Pictures and Di Bonaventura Pictures (Lorenzo Di Bonaventura’s production company, notable because he was a producer of Constantine and head of production at Warner Bros. when they produced the Matrix trilogy), with a script by Chad St. John and Tanya Wexler directing.

Then, the project sort of disappeared off the radar… [Click here to read more…]

Will the production team or cast be at NY Comic-Con?

Besson has confirmed his attendance at New York Comic-Con alongside Jean-Claude Mézières, illustrator and co-creator of the original graphic novel, for a meet and greet and autograph session tomorrow, October 6th. In addition to meeting two of the masterminds behind this French space-opera, Comic-Con will also house an interactive booth featuring a bunch of early video footage, still images, and props from the film, as well as a themed photo booth and a comic book store!

Time-traveling space opera Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets drops worldwide June 21, 2017, so you have plenty of time to read the comic series if you wish!

*This reminds me of a classic video game and I can’t figure out which one!! I’m phoning a friend, please comment below if you know! None of us can figure it out…

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