After fighting a bunch of alien forces in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Chris Pratt is back to fighting a bunch of alien forces in The Tomorrow War. The upcoming sci-fi action flick sees the Guardians of the Galaxy star play Dan Forester, a former Delta Force Operator-turned-high school teacher who is drafted to fight a war waged in the future. Directed by Chris McKay, best known for The Lego Batman Movie, the film combines time travel, action, and aliens in what looks like a summer blockbuster. The film casts Pratt, Yvonne Strahovski, JK Simmons, Betty Giplin, Sam Richardson, and Edwin Hodge.
In a press conference ahead of the film’s release on Amazon Prime Video, the cast and creators got together to take us into the making process.
The Tomorrow War is an all-out actioner that packs in a lot of firepowers. In it, the human race is up against deadly aliens and Chris Pratt and co. are tasked with going to the future in 2051 to fight a war that will save their present. Opening up about the craziest action scene from the film the actor said, “Off the top of my head, there’s a really great sequence and I know that we’re focusing on the people of present-day 2021, but when we do make that jump to 2051, there’s this transition and we fall from the sky in Miami and land in a pool. There was some serious waterwork that we got to do and that is a lot of fun. We got to jump off of this high dive that we built out of a forklift and jump off into the water. The camera followed us down and then you had stunt people jumping down and landing on top of you forcing you underwater,”
“That whole sequence probably took two or three days, was really cool, really fun, really physical. There’s a camera down there, you’re trying to get smashed into the ground and come up, and struggle into a close-up underwater. It was a lot of fun. That’s something that stands out,” he added.
Like his previous films including Jurassic World, Pratt has a lot of practice performing alongside creatures that don’t really exist. While most films have props to help with the scene, The Tomorrow War had its cast imagine the alien threat. The actor revealed “I’ve had my fair share of experience of running from and fighting against creatures that aren’t there. Yes, there’s certainly a craft to it. You could have a whole podcast episode about the way to achieve it, but it’s a combination of various things you’re going to look at, whether it will be a tennis ball or the guy named Troy [stunt man] who’s seven feet tall, a mountain of a man, and very scary.”
He continued, “Then you’ve got the prosthetic and then you’re sometimes in the big wide shots, you may have nothing. It really depends on the angle that you’re in because, of course, these big sequences consist of so many shots and sizes. If you’re doing a close-up and it needs to be really scary, you might have- or, in this case, it’s mostly going to be really scary. You’re not trying to have an emotional relationship with one of these creatures, but in a close-up, you might be looking into the eyes of an actor. You have something you can pull from, you can draw- they can draw something out of you. It really depends on what the shot is. It’s the most embarrassing acting you’ll ever do. Acting opposite something that’s not there and fighting something that’s not there is particularly embarrassing,”
The film subverts a popular war film trope where the younger generation gets drafted for wars and sends in people in their 30s instead. Talking about the fascinating subversion he said, “In terms of our history of conscription, if it’s World War II or Vietnam, we’ve seen these movies where it is 18, 19-year-old kids getting thrown into the throws, you’re getting thrown into battle. They’re just kids forced to become men,”
“Everyone who goes forward into the future is over the age of 30 and everyone who’s come back to train us is under the age of 30 because you realize that you can’t live in both timelines at the same time. They’re really just drafting a crop of people who are going to be dead in 2051. You are dealing with people who are making life decisions based not on the life that they could lead, but rather the world that they’re leaving for their children,” he added
Revealing his character’s motivations he said, ”My character, Dan is doing this because if he doesn’t go, they’re going to take his wife in his place. This is something he has to do to protect his family and to protect his daughter and leave her with a home life of having her mother there. It’s a different theme to think about someone being drafted away from their children rather than children being drafted away from their parents,”
Check out the latest trailer of the film here:
The official synopsis reads – In THE TOMORROW WAR, the world is stunned when a group of time travelers arrive from the year 2051 to deliver an urgent message: Thirty years in the future mankind is losing a global war against a deadly alien species. The only hope for survival is for soldiers and civilians from the present to be transported to the future and join the fight. Among those recruited is high school teacher and family man Dan Forester (Chris Pratt). Determined to save the world for his young daughter, Dan teams up with a brilliant scientist (Yvonne Strahovski) and his estranged father (J.K. Simmons) in a desperate quest to rewrite the fate of the planet.
The Tomorrow War will release on July 2, 2021 on Amazon Prime Video
Cover artwork: Bhavya Poonia/Mashable India