A few months ago is was announced that Damon Lindelof and Brad Bird would be developing a new sci-fi film for Disney under the name 1952. It was previously revealed that the two talents are looking to recapture the spirit of 1977’s Close Encounters of the Third Kind, right down to centering it around a man in his late forties, like Richard Dreyfuss’s Roy Neary, and there's been talk of George Clooney being that guy.
In a recent interview with Collider Lindelof talks about working on the project with Bird who is both directing and co-writing the film. Lindelof also reveals that they hope to start production on the movie sometime next year. He begins by giving us the lowdown on how the movie came about,
The writing of Trek was happening around the same time as the post production on Ghost Protocol so we were both in that a Bad Robot space at lot at that time and kind of became buds. I told him about this thing that I was working on over here at Disney. We were eating sushi, just one of those like, “So, what are you working on?” “Brad what are you doing after you wrap up on Ghost Protocol?” “Damon what are you doing after Trek?” And so I started talking about this thing and I could just see his eyes light up a little bit and I’m now totally willing to blow up this budding friendship because if I don’t my take a shot at him not I’ll be kicking myself forever. Which is to say, “Hey, if you would ever want to be involved in this thing in any way, shape or form, just call yourself an executive producer and I’ll give you a parking spot and you don’t even need to do anything on it. That would be a dream come true.
Then we just started exchanging emails and talking about it and then this guy Jeff Jensen, who’s a friend of mine, he and I really worked on the – when you finally hear about what this thing is I’ll be able to be much more explicit about what it is. Anytime something interesting happened in the development process I would just let Bird know, “Hey we had this cool idea today.” In the spirit of letting him know that I wasn’t letting him off the hook. And then the next thing I knew I was asking him if he would direct it and he said yes. He and have now been co-writing the movie for the last four months and that’s been an incredible experience because anytime you write with a partner that you haven’t written with before they call bullshit on all your tricks that you have come to rely on and feel comfortable with, and then you learn from them in terms of how to think and how to evolve.
I'm very intrigued by this movie project, and apparently Disney has given them a lot of creative freedom to realize this story that they want to tell.
We’ve been given a tremendous amount of creative licensee by Disney, which is kind of surprising just because they’re Disney and they have a specific, corporate brand to maintain. But it’s been really wonderful working with them. Obviously Brad had Disney in his veins, even though he was fired back in his days as an animator, it’s good to be back in the old animation building knocking a story around.
So next time I'm on the Disney lot I know where to find these guys working! I'll make sure to pop in on the old animation building. Lindelof concludes by talking about the production saying,
We have to lock down some key casting elements and we have to make sure that the movie isn’t going to cost them (Disney) an arm and a leg. I have confidence that we’ll be able to accomplish both those things and hopefully when we do we’ll be able to announce what this movie is.
I'm looking forward to finding out more information on this. I'm a big fan of both Lindelof and Bird, and I can't wait to see what they are creating for us! Click Here to read some theories on what the movie might be based on.