Mud and Take Shelter director Jeff Nichols is keeping his next film, Midnight Special, as mysterious as possible. The little we know is this: the film stars Michael Shannon and Kirsten Dunst as the parents of young son (Jaeden Lieberher) who is supernaturally gifted. When the nature of those gifts is publicly revealed, the family is forced to go on the run from religious extremists and local law enforcement. The film is also backed by an excellent supporting cast, including Adam Driver, Joel Edgerton, and Sam Shepard.
We first heard about the project back in early 2013, when Nichols cited John Carpenter‘s Starman as a reference point and described Midnight Special as a “a genre film put through whatever bizarre filter is me”. Now, we’ve finally got an (albeit small) taste of what to expect in the form of a first look image, and an even more revealing first poster. The image comes via EW, where Nichols described it as a sci-fi chase film and cited some more genre influences from his youth saying, “Close Encounters of the Third Kind, E.T., Starman, they were my inspirations — very propulsive journeys that work when you can’t predict what’s going to happen next”.
Check out the new Midnight Special image below and scroll through for the poster.
I just really need this movie in my life as soon as possible. Jeff Nichols makes films with enveloping atmosphere and emotion, so his angle on science fiction is an absolute must watch. It’s a rarity to see original sci-fi these days, but an original sci-fi from a visionary writer-director with studio backing? That almost never happens. Not to mention that impeccable cast he’s lined up. Michael Shannon is seemingly incapable of turning out a bad performance. Edgerton is one of those actors that improves every movie he’s in. Shepard and Driver get to play against type a bit, with Shepard taking the role of one of the religious nut and Driver stepping away from villainous Kylo Ren territory as a government agent who’s essentially a “decent guy”. Everything about it sounds wonderful, and as you can see in the poster below, they’re absolutely nailing that 1980s sci-fi adventure vibe.
Midnight Special is due in theaters March 18, 2016.