Eastwood's Hereafter is About the '04 Tsunami and Dead People!
by Alex Billington
November 10, 2009
Yep, you read that headline right! Last night, a story hit Variety reporting that Belgian actress Cecile de France had joined the cast of Clint Eastwood's new film Hereafter, which (in previous articles) has been described as a supernatural thriller, without any major plot details beyond that. Reading on, I noticed that they said it had already been shooting for a month, which is quite amazing considering Clint just finished Invictus, which hits theaters in December and potentially could win Best Picture. Damn he is a workhorse! But then I started to think back to some details about Hereafter that I'd heard in various places recently.
In the comments on one of our recent posts, someone wrote that "Clint Eastwood is working on a tsunami movie for his next project." That comment got me thinking so I decided to some further research. Variety's plot description says that it "tells the story of three people who are touched by death in different ways." Shooting locations include Paris, London, Hawaii and San Francisco. So they're shooting in Hawaii? The plot thickens. I started looking for comments on the IMDb boards and found a few mentions of shooting in the Alps and some tidbits about the shoot in London. Then I hit the jackpot with this from The Guardian:
The film tells three parallel stories that eventually intersect – about a French TV journalist, played by Cecile de France, who suffers a near-death experience during the Asian tsunami of 2004; a drug-addicted English single mother, played by Lyndsey Marshal, who loses one of her twin 10-year-old sons in a car accident; and [Matt] Damon's character, who can talk to the dead but prefers not to. De France and Marshal contact Damon in a desperate quest for answers and consolation.
Now that sounds pretty damn interesting and like nothing he's ever directed before. Another description says Damon is playing a "reluctant psychic," which is a more succinct, yet fitting, way to describe exactly the character that synopsis says he's playing. Other write-ups have compared this to M. Night Shyamalan's Sixth Sense, which makes sense considering that Damon talks to (and potentially sees?) dead people. I have a feeling that DreamWorks (who is releasing this in December, 2010) is trying to keep these plot details a secret, not only because it's a mysterious plot, but because they're trying to keep the focus on Invictus.
Hereafter was written by Frost/Nixon and The Queen writer Peter Morgan. It stars Matt Damon as well as Marthe Keller, Mylène Jampanoï, Thierry Neuvic, and Cecile de France. It sounds like some crazy Clint Eastwood mix of something like Amores Perros or Babel (with three storylines coming together) and Sixth Sense. I'm very curious to see if he's creating this to be creepy in a Sixth Sense way or more dramatic and suspenseful. Steven Spielberg, Frank Marshall, and Kathleen Kennedy are all producing, which certainly means big things. This sounds like it could be a very unique project and I'm curious to hear more about it.