News continues to leak from Looper, the futuristic, time-traveling assassin film starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Bruce Willis, and Emily Blunt. Following a deal with Chinese Production company, DMG, the sci-fi actioner has gone through some major changes, presumably to make the newest investors happy. For one, the film will be rewritten to take place in China instead of France, as originally intended.
Earlier this week, we told you about Primer’s Shane Carruth joining the production, but he’s not the only new name added to the film. Xu Qing, a relatively unknown actress to Hollywood was added to the cast as Bruce Willis’ wife. According to the story synopsis, Willis is Gordon-Levitt’s future self, so Qing’s casting could end up being for an important part of the movie.
Hit the jump to read more about what the DMG deal means to the movie and to see some futuristic prop designs.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the DMG deal along with Qing’s casting may have been made in order to solidify Looper’s chance of premiering in China, which currently has a cap on international releases. Should the ploy work, the rewrite and new casting should pay off for the production in a big way.
China, as you may know, has a lot of people and apparently, those people want to see movies. The nation is currently going through a cinematic boom. Theaters are being built and movie tickets are being sold at an obscene pace. With the 20-film cap on international flicks, any Hollywood movie that can break into the Chinese market is guaranteeing itself a healthy chunk of box office.
The reported changes to Looper’s story include the fact that 60 years into the future, China has become the largest superpower in the world and is the country credited with developing time travel. That plot point may come into play as Joseph Gordon-Levitt acts as a time-skipping hitman. DMG, the Chinese producers of Looper are also developing a prop-Chinese currency which will act as the main monetary source in the movie.
Finally, in other prop-related news, /Film got a hold of a batch of prop design photos and they happen to look really cool. The photos show off designs for a stereo system, a “water pump,” and a hilariously-lame looking “mini-scooter” which appears to combine a Segway with a Razor-style fold-up scooter. But the crème de la crème has got to be the design for the sleek, undoubtedly future-y “Speeder.”
These props were actually designed by engineers at the University of Louisiana Lafayette and have a definite style about them.
For those just tuning in, here’s director Rian Johnson’s synopsis for the film:
Looper is a time travel movie, set in a near future where time travel doesn’t exist but will be invented in a few decades. It’s pretty dark in tone, much different from Bloom, and involves a group of killers (called Loopers) who work for a crime syndicate in the future. Their bosses send their targets hogtied and blindfolded back in time to the Loopers, and their job is to simply shoot them in the head and dispose of the body. So the target vanishes from the future and the Loopers dispose of a corpse that doesn’t technically exist, a very clean system. Complications set in from there.
Here are more image of the props: