It’s been four years since George Clooney had a leading role in a movie (remember Money Monster?). He’s kept busy directing the misguided Suburbicon and directing/taking a supporting role in Hulu’s adaptation of Catch-22, but now he’s directing and stepping back out in front of the camera for the sci-fi drama The Midnight Sky, which will arrive on Netflix in December.
Vanity Fair reports that Clooney plays scientist Augustine Lofthouse at a remote arctic research station on a post-apocalyptic planet. He’s also dying of cancer while trying to take care of a child (Caoilinn Springall) who stowed away during the outpost’s evacuation. Now Lofthouse has an even harder task ahead of him as he tries to stop an exploratory vessel returning from one of Jupiter’s moons from coming back because there’s nothing left on Earth for them. It’s pretty bleak!
However, Clooney says that even in this haunting setting, he was looking for hope. “I wanted it to be about redemption in a way,” Clooney said. “I wanted there to be some hopefulness in a fairly bleak story about the end of mankind.”
The Revenant screenwriter Mark L. Smith adapted the story from the book Good Morning, Midnight by Lily Brooks-Dalton, and Clooney sees the two plots as a mixture of Revenant as well as Gravity. “It’s a tricky thing,” Clooney said of the movie, “because half of it’s Gravity, and the other half of it’s The Revenant. And they’re not natural fits, so it was a constant balancing act.”
The “Gravity” portion consists of five astronauts played by Felicity Jones, David Oyelowo, Tiffany Boone, Kyle Chandler, and Demián Bichir. Each is trying to handle their various duties while Lofthouse is working to establish communication and tell them of Earth’s sad fate. Given everything we’ve been through in 2020, it should be an interesting story to tell.
Check out the first images below.