I received an all expenses paid trip to Los Angeles for the coverage of several events for Disney’s Tomorrowland. All opinions are 100% my own.
While in Los Angeles, we watched Tomorrowland before sitting down with the film director, Brad Bird, and producer, Damon Lindelof, for an exclusive question and answer session.
Through the interview, you could easily pick up on both Brad and Damon’s love and admiration for the film, which will be in theaters May 22! (Only a few more days!)
First off, we wanted to know how information from the Disney archives helped to bring Tomorrowland to life on the big screen. There’s so much in the archive, I couldn’t wait to hear the answer.
“I think that we are both fascinated with Imagineering and particularly Walt’s futurism. A lot of that stuff was rampant in the early days of designing the parks itself. And in Tomorrowland, obviously, he came up with the concept in the 50s and 60s, but I think that this sort of treasure trove of roads not taken.”
“Our initial ambition was a lot higher, but again the world’s fair as what they represented at the time, particularly in the 60s… the connection to Disneyland… that was really the stuff that we kind of locked in on!” – Damon Lindelof
But there was more to the answer…
“It’s also that the World’s Fair was a thing where people would bring together their brightest minds and talk about the future. And they were semi regular event where people came together from all over the world and kind of traded ideas. And they had a utopian aspect. And when we were talking about what happened to the idea of a positive future we kind of started to notice that that great future sort of disappeared around the time the world’s fairs disappeared.”
“The world went through world wars and had plenty of strife but people clung to the idea of things in the future will be better. And that idea seems to have been retired. And we are now everybody seems to be going, yeah it’s going to suck. You know? And is there anything we can do about it? No. So we’re all just kind of on this bus that we have no control over the destination.”
“So we (Damon and Brad) were just kind of looking at each other going, why did that change? And when did it change? And you know, how do we get back to it? So that was kind of trying to do sort of a fable around that idea was kind of on our minds.”
A pretty amazing explanation, right?
We commented on the duo’s creativeness and love for storytelling. Then asked what feeds into that creativity and who helps tell those stories?
“We watch a lot of TV. We go and see a lot of movies. It’s the idea of constantly sort of surrounding yourself. I do feel for me in particular and I think that Brad shares this is we sort of grew up in that culture and the idea of saying like, I want to do this one day. But where we start almost every time that we get together is oh, did you see this and did you read this? Or what do you think about that? …And I think that we are fans of this material ourselves!” – Damon Lindelof
Before we ended our conversation, our group wanted to know Brad and Damon’s hope for viewers to take away from watching the film. The message was simple: we are collectively in charge of where we want and what we want the future to be… a malleable thing that’s changing every day, though being created by what people do today.
Disney comes two-time Oscar® winner Brad Bird’s riveting, mystery adventure “Tomorrowland,” starring Academy Award® winner George Clooney. Bound by a shared destiny, former boy-genius Frank (Clooney), jaded by disillusionment, and Casey (Britt Robertson), a bright, optimistic teen bursting with scientific curiosity, embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space known only as “Tomorrowland.” What they must do there changes the world—and them—forever.
Featuring a screenplay by “Lost” writer and co-creator Damon Lindelof and Brad Bird, from a story by Lindelof & Bird & Jeff Jensen, “Tomorrowland” promises to take audiences on a thrill ride of nonstop adventures through new dimensions that have only been dreamed of.
TOMORROWLAND opens in theaters everywhere on May 22nd!