By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist January 19, 2012 at 9:43AM
Well, say what you will about M. Night Shyamalan, but his films -- even at their worst -- have always looked pretty damn good (the exception being the abysmal "The Last Airbender"). Shyamalan has always had a knank for picking great cinematographers to work with on his films including Tak Fujimoto ("The Happening," "Signs," "The Sixth Sense"), Roger Deakins ("The Village") and Eduardo Serra ("Unbreakable"). However, one of his most famous collaborations occured when he somehow managed to wrangle the cranky, Hollywood-hating, but exceptionally gifted Christopher Doyle for "The Lady In The Water." The longtime cinematographer for Wong Kar-Wai (though they haven't worked together since "In The Mood For Love") is known for capturing astonishingly beautiful and unexpected moments. And while we'll have to wait and see if Shyamalan and Doyle's career paths ever cross again, it sure seems like the director is a big fan of the cinematographer's work.
Shyamalan recently joined Twitter and gave his followers a peek (via /Film) at some pre-production artwork for his upcoming sci-fi film "After Earth." One picture in particular seemed to be a wall of visual and tonal influences on the flim and pinned up under the section "General" was a still from "In The Mood For Love." Moreover, it seems to be the odd one out from the group of photos, that mostly feature lots of trees and natural settings. But this is quite different, a close up on Maggie Cheung's face with a love lorn Tony Leung in the background.
How that influence will play out in the film (or, like many things in pre-production, if it's an idea that will eventually get ditched or morphed into something else) remains to be seen. The story follows a father and son (Will and Jaden Smith) who land on Earth a milllenium after it's been abandoned by humanity, and forced to battle against the elements when the father is injured. Will a romance strike up between Jaden and the recently cast Isabelle Fuhrman or Zoe Kravitz? Or maybe between Will and Sophie Okonedo? Who knows. Or maybe someone will whisper a secret into a hollow.
Shooting begins on the project begins in March, with a June 7, 2013 release date already penciled in.