Geostorm is out now, so we caught up with star Jim Sturgess to discuss the making of the movie.
After an unprecedented series of natural disasters threatened the planet, the world’s leaders came together to create an intricate network of satellites to control the global climate and keep everyone safe. But now, something has gone wrong—the system built to protect the Earth is attacking it, and it’s a race against the clock to uncover the real threat before a worldwide geostorm wipes out everything…and everyone along with it.
Dean Devlin (writer/producer of Independence Day) makes his feature film directorial debut with suspense thriller Geostorm, which stars Gerard Butler, Jim Sturgess, Abbie Cornish, Alexandra Maria Lara, Daniel Wu, Eugenio Derbez, Ed Harris and Andy Garcia.
Butler stars as Jake, a scientist who, along with his brother, Max, played by Sturgess, is tasked with solving the satellite program’s malfunction. Cornish stars as Secret Service agent Sarah Wilson; Lara as Ute Fassbinder, the ISS astronaut who runs the space station; Wu as Cheng, the Hong Kong-based supervisor for the Dutch Boy Program; Derbez as space station crew member Hernandez; with Garcia as U.S. President Andrew Palma; and Harris as Secretary of State Leonard Dekkom.
The film also stars Zazie Beetz, Adepero Oduye, Amr Waked and Robert Sheehan.
Congratulations of the film. How did you first get involved with the project?
Yeah, it came and it was really exciting. Warner Brothers asked me if I was interested in being involved and that was really exciting for me, you know, to be asked for a big movie like this. I’ve never made a movie like this so I was really thrilled and wanted to get involved. Then I talked to Dean (Devlin), the director and we spoke on the phone, which was after I read the script, and I thought ‘wow, what an opportunity to be in a big giant, exciting movie’!
It’s a real throwback to the classic disaster films of the 90s…
Why do you think those movies resonate with audiences so much?
The genre of disaster movies is something I don’t know too much about to be honest with you! But yeah, I think with this film, at this particular time, it’s very interesting. With disaster movies, it’s kind of like a black mirror held up to society and the world that we live in, and it shocks people and scares the life out of people… to see this kind of devastation. So you’re sort of seeing a world that you know and can understand, but you’re watching it from a safe place. And you have hope that the world will be saved by the end of it. You can enjoy it, but be shocked and scared at the same time.
I thought that one of the films strongest points was your relationship with Gerard Butler. How did you work on developing that brotherly bond for the film?
It was really easy and really natural. The minute we met we just kind of hit it off. You know, Gerard is older than me and probably more irresponsible than me (smiles) so that worked out pretty nicely (laughs). He’s just a really good laugh you know? Gerard is perfect casting for this because he’s really good fun but takes his work incredibly seriously – he’s a really hard working guy and has a lot going on so he’s kind of like his character in the film. When it comes down to the work he’s really focused.
How was it reconnecting with Ed Harris, whom you’ve worked with in the past? It must be good to approach a big film with someone you already know?
It was definitely that, yeah. The first day on the set was pretty terrifying so if you know someone already and have a connection and history with somebody it’s great. And Ed’s one of the only actors I’ve ever worked with twice so it was amazing. We were very close when we finished The Way Back and Ed has been a friend and mentor for all the years from filming and after so when we both found out we were going to be in this we were both on the phone!
Yeah, we were really excited! When I arrived at the hotel he was waiting for me in the lobby and we were like two school kids waiting to start our first day at school! (laughs)
Could I get your thoughts on climate change, and why this film is so relevant now?
Yeah, it is hugely relevant now which is scary. It was interesting because part of the process of being involved with the film, your head goes into what the issues are in the film and I started to read up a lot on climate change, see a lot of documentaries and watch a lot of talks on the internet. Your mind starts getting bombarded with the facts and figures and it’s very hard to sort of turn away and pretend it isn’t happening. I just hope that the film at least gets a conversation going, or at least some consciousness as you leave the cinema, hopefully after being entertained. The primary focus of the film is to entertain but it would be great if it could get a dialogue going about climate change. It’s always good to keep these issues in the air and talk about it.
Geostorm is out now.