Tom Cruise headlines a spectacular, all-new cinematic version of the legend that has fascinated cultures all over the world since the dawn of civilization: The Mummy.
Thought safely entombed in a tomb deep beneath the unforgiving desert, an ancient princess (Sofia Boutella of Kingsman: The Secret Service and Star Trek Beyond) whose destiny was unjustly taken from her is awakened in our current day, bringing with her malevolence grown over millennia and terrors that defy human comprehension.
From the sweeping sands of the Middle East through hidden labyrinths under modern-day London, The Mummy brings a surprising intensity and balance of wonder and thrills in an imaginative new take that ushers in a new world of gods and monsters.
Cruise is joined by a cast including Annabelle Wallis (upcoming King Arthur, television’s Peaky Blinders), Jake Johnson (Jurassic World), Courtney B. Vance (TV’s American Crime Story: The People V. O.J. Simpson), Marwan Kenzari (The Promise) and Oscar® winner Russell Crowe (Gladiator).
The creative team is led by director/producer Alex Kurtzman and producer Chris Morgan, who have been instrumental in growing some of the most successful franchises of the past several years—with Kurtzman writing or producing entries in the Transformers, Star Trek and Mission: Impossible series, and Morgan being the narrative engineer of the Fast & Furious saga as it has experienced explosive growth from its third chapter on. Sean Daniel, who produced the most recent Mummy trilogy, and Sarah Bradshaw (Maleficent) produce alongside Kurtzman and Morgan.
ZERO-GRAVITY STUNT BACKGROUND
Over the course of his career, Cruise has dedicated himself to accomplishing ever-more ambitious practical stunts, ones that would test the most seasoned stunt performer. His goal is to place the audience right next to his characters…in every single frame captured by the camera.
In the Mission: Impossible series, Cruise free-climbed the Burj Khalifa (world’s tallest building), gripped the outside of an in-flight transport plane (eight times), made free-water dives of 130 ft., hung from Utah’s jagged Dead Horse Point by his fingertips and leaped from a Triumph Speed Triple motorcycle…only to tackle a co-star mid-flight.
Whether dangling on the 800-ft. edge of Iceland’s Earl’s Peak for Oblivion or slamming his Chevelle into fellow drivers’ cars in Jack Reacher, it’s crucial to the performer that he pushes himself further in each film, and that the audience shares in the adrenaline.
Cruise has long wanted to lens in Zero Gravity, and in The Mummy, one tactical stunt has become his biggest, most demanding maneuver to date. In order to shoot one of the most visceral plane-crash sequences ever filmed, he’d need to take to the skies.
DETAILS OF THE STUNT
Almost four miles above sea level, Cruise, co-star Annabelle Wallis and key crew—all under the eye of The Mummy director/producer Alex Kurtzman—lensed a sequence that is impossible to shoot on land.
Off the coast of France near Bordeaux—over two days and multiple flights—pilots and astronauts of Novespace Airbus (A-310) took the company 20,000 ft. high.
From this altitude, they climbed rapidly to a 50-degree angle to just over 25,000 feet; there, the plane reduced thrust, and free fell from the sky.
For 22-23 seconds during the ballistic phase, the company felt weightless. As the Airbus free fell, cast and crew balanced dialogue, camerawork and choreography for a plane-crash scene that will appear in summer 2017’s The Mummy.
For the stunt, the pilots enacted a total of 60 parabolas (repeated weightlessness sessions). Each parabola allowed for the filming of a key sequence in the scene.
At least 90% of the plane crash sequence is real. The only visual effects will be added in post-production and blend sets together so they look the same size and scale.
PARABOLIC FLIGHTS / AIRBUS ZERO-G TECH FACTS
Under the direction of European Space Agency astronaut Jean-Francois Clervoy, crew filmed with Novespace, founder of the first parabolic (Zero Gravity) flights in Europe. The Zero-G Airbus is the only plane in the world manned by three pilots simultaneously: one controls pitch, one controls the wings and one controls thrust.
The “pull-up” phase starts at full thrust and max speed from level flight until a 50-degree incline, before the “injection” phase and beginning of weightless (actual freefall, not floating).
During “pull up,” those aboard feel twice their weight on Earth.
The aircraft is briefly injected into orbit, following an elliptical trajectory above the Earth, so passengers live the true weightlessness that astronauts feel.
ABOUT THE SARCOPHAGUS
The largest single vertical structure ever assembled at the Hollywood & Highland gateway, The Mummy sarcophagus stands almost 75 feet in height, 28 feet in width and weighs an astonishing 15,000 pounds.
Princess Ahmanet’s head section alone is 13 feet tall. This extraordinary feat of engineering took two firms a total of eight weeks to construct, and scores of workers more than 160 hours to install. Split into 9 different units, her supposed eternal resting place required more than 2,500 square feet of steel.
The hundreds on hieroglyphics on Ahmanet’s ancient tomb tell the story of betrayal by her people, and their attempts to hold her between this world and the next. To prepare Ahmanet’s sarcophagus for its The Mummy Day revealing, the tomb required 18 wide-load tractor trailers to move all of the elements into place.
THE MUMMY ZERO GRAVITY STUNT VR EXPERIENCE
As seen in Universal Pictures’ The Mummy, there is a plane-crash sequence in the upcoming film that was shot 90% practically.
The Mummy Zero Gravity Stunt VR Experience goes behind the scenes with Tom Cruise and co-star Annabelle Wallis as they perform the intense Zero G stunt.
Almost four miles above sea level, Cruise, Wallis and key crew—all under the eye of The Mummy director/producer Alex Kurtzman—filmed a sequence that is impossible to shoot on land. A set was built inside Novespace Airbus (A-310) to make it look like the interior of C-130 military transport aircraft.
This immersive VR experience is enhanced by Positron’s Voyager platform, featuring custom engineering and software, guided 360-degree motion control, head-tracked 3D audio, and haptic integration—allowing guests to experience the world of The Mummy in a way they could only imagine.
THE MUMMY ESCAPE GAME
In The Mummy Escape Game, an immersive live-action fan experience that also makes its world premiere at The Mummy Day, guests will be recruited as security guards and enter the sweeping story of The Mummy.
They must solve interactive puzzles to save mankind from the revenge of an ancient princess who has awakened in current day.
Ahmanet’s thirst for justice has spanned centuries, and players must outwit the fearless warrior to survive. Turning the storyline into reality by traveling through multiple rooms, up to 10 players work together within a 60-minute time limit to solve the puzzle and defeat the game.
Genres Epic Action-Adventure Starring Tom Cruise, Sofia Boutella, Annabelle Wallis, Jake Johnson, Courtney B. Vance, Marwan Kenzari, and Russell Crowe Directed By Alex Kurtzman Produced By Alex Kurtzman, Chris Morgan, Sean Daniel, Sarah Bradshaw Executive Produced By Jeb Brody, Roberto OrciThis content is copyright, 2017, Universal Studios, all rights reserved.Hollywood Sentinel
LOS ANGELES, CA – For a second consecutive year, late-night talk show favorite Jimmy Kimmel will return to host the Oscars® telecast and Michael De Luca and Jennifer Todd will produce, Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs announced this month. The 90th Academy Awards® will air live on the ABC Television Network and broadcast outlets worldwide on Oscar® Sunday, March 4, 2018.
“Jimmy, Mike and Jennifer are truly an Oscar Dream Team,” said Ms. Boone Isaacs. “Mike and Jennifer produced a beautiful show that was visually stunning. And Jimmy proved, from his opening monologue all the way through a finale we could never have imagined, that he is one our finest hosts in Oscar history.”
“Hosting the Oscars was a highlight of my career and I am grateful to Cheryl, Dawn and the Academy for asking me to return to work with two of my favorite people, Mike De Luca and Jennifer Todd,” said Mr. Kimmel. “If you think we screwed up the ending this year, wait until you see what we have planned for the 90th anniversary show!”
“It’s not often you get two chances to have a once-in-a-lifetime experience and even more rare to be handed the keys to a party 90 years in the making,” said Mr. De Luca and Mr. Todd. “We always thought the idea that anything can happen on the Oscars was a cliché until we lived it.”
“Our Oscars team this year delivered a show that hit every high note,” said Academy CEO Dawn Hudson. “Jimmy brought back the essence and light touch of the greatest hosts of Oscars’ past. Mike and Jennifer’s love of movies is infectious and touched every aspect of the show. This is the perfect team to lead us into the ninth decade.”
“After just one year, we can’t imagine anyone else hosting The Oscars. Jimmy’s skillful command of the stage is invaluable on a night when anything can happen – and does,” said Channing Dungey, President, ABC Entertainment. “With Mike and Jennifer at the helm, we’re ready for another unforgettable show that will dazzle, delight and, most importantly, honor 90 years of Hollywood’s most prestigious award.”
Kimmel serves as host and executive producer of the Emmy®-winning “Jimmy Kimmel Live!,” ABC’s late-night talk show. Now in its 15th season, “JKL” has earned six Emmy nominations in the Outstanding Variety Series Talk category, the Writing for a Variety Series category, and the Variety, Music or Comedy Series category.
Mr. De Luca earned Best Picture Oscar nominations for producing “Captai” Phillips,” “Moneyball” and “The Social Network.” He is credited on more than 60 films, including the “Fifty Shades of Grey” trilogy, “Blow,” “Magnolia,” “American History X” and “Boogie Nights.” He is a former president of production at Columbia Pictures, DreamWorks and New Line Cinema.
Ms. Todd is currently president of Pearl Street Films, the production company founded by Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, where she produced “Live by Night” and executive produced last year’s “Jason Bourne.” Her other credits include such films as “Alice through the Looking Glass,” “Celeste and Jesse Forever,” “Alice in Wonderland,” “Across the Universe,” “Prime,” “Memento,” “Boiler Room” and the “Austin Powers” films. Todd earned an Emmy nomination for her work on the HBO television movie “If These Walls Could Talk 2.”
Hollywood Sentinel publisher Bruce Edwin states, “Despite its criticism for its reported ballot flub, the last Oscar show was one of the most entertaining and unforgettable ever. Jimmy Kimmel–who is brilliant, was a major part of that. I am very pleased that The Academy–in their wisdom, is having him return.”
The 90th Oscars will be held on Sunday, March 4, 2018, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® in Hollywood, and will be televised live on the ABC Television Network at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT. The Oscars also will be televised live in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.
ABOUT THE ACADEMY
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is a global community of more than 7,000 of the most accomplished artists, filmmakers and executives working in film. In addition to celebrating and recognizing excellence in filmmaking through the Oscars, the Academy supports a wide range of initiatives to promote the art and science of the movies, including public programming, educational outreach and the upcoming Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, which is under construction in Los Angeles.
This content is copyright, AMPAS 2017, all rights reserved.
The minimalist beauty of the 89th Annual Academy Award for Best Picture, the film ‘Moonlight,’ is both elegiac and hopeful. In a world of poverty and violence, a richness of character, however flawed, shines transcendent. This film is artful. This film is all that a Best Picture should be.
Before ‘Moonlight’ received its Oscar nomination, the first person I know who saw it came back from the theater with her face aglow. “You have to go see it,” they stated. “What’s it about?” I asked. “You just have to go see it,” they replied.
Moonlight is a hero’s odyssey. The main character, Chiron, is the African-American son of a crack-addicted mother and target of bullying at his Miami school. The film is divided into the Greek three act structure, wherein Chiron is portrayed in glimpses as a young boy, teenager, and man. The name Chiron traces its origin to classic Greek mythology; Chiron was a civilized, intelligent centaur, who, in varying accounts, gave up his immortality. (The character has been explored for millennia, in Greek and Roman mythology, in Dante’s Inferno, and Pulitzer Prize winning author John Updike’s novel The Centaur, which was set in the context of 20th-century small-town America.)
The cinematographer’s palette is exquisitely utilized. Pale sheets of color—Miami pastels—appear as washes that transform walls in Chiron’s mother’s low income housing into a vibratory entity similar to Rothko’s paintings.
The sound track includes contemporary classical music, rap, and an even an R&B song that echoes the sweet layered harmonies of the innocent 1950’s. The score’s disparate melodies all work together despite referencing different cultures and time periods. There is so much beauty and so much pain.
This film is brutal, and timeless. While it is set in a world that most audience members would not voluntarily visit, it is universal in its depiction of a first, true love.
Everyone will remember the 89th Academy Awards because of the accidental announcement of ‘La La Land’ as Best Picture. But ‘La La Land,’ with all the advantage of being a film by Hollywood about Hollywood, piled on the trappings of the Golden Era while having forgotten the old adage, all that glitters isn’t gold. While ‘La La Land’ tells us of love aborted for the cult of ambition; ‘Moonlight’ shows us a world where love is the only ambition.
Moira Cue is art and literature editor of Hollywood Sentinel, and an award winning multi-media artist working in art, music, film, and fiction among more. For more information on Moira visit the official website at www.MoiraCue.com
This content is copyright 2017, Moira Cue / Hollywood Sentinel, all world rights reserved.