Comic-Con 2010: An Intense First Look at Battle: Los Angeles
by Alex Billington
July 22, 2010
We just finished watching Sony's Comic-Con 2010 panel, the first half focusing on Salt (but who cares?), and the second half focusing on Battle: Los Angeles, a movie I've been anxiously awaiting to see footage from since first hearing about a while ago. At the beginning, they debuted a solid five minute chunk of new footage and DAMN does this look awesome. Think kind of District 9 meets Black Hawk Down, with a marine battalion fighting "unknown" alien invaders on the streets of Los Angeles. Lots of great intimate shots with the marines as well as shots of helicopters flying over LA while being attacked, looks awesome.
Appearing at the panel were Aaron Eckhart, Michelle Rodriguez and director Jonathan Liebesman, who explain that what they wanted to make was a movie that was "very intense, like Black Hawk Down but with aliens in it." He was inspired by footage of soldiers embedded in Iraq and wanted to make this movie focusing on one particular marine battalion as opposed to the world-wide focus like in Independence Day, despite that the alien invasion in the movie is worldwide (but the key battle is in Los Angeles). "Jonathan ran us like dogs, and never really gave us any breaks," Eckhart said regarding how intense it was to shoot.
As for why producer Neal Moritz liked the project, he explained that he loved the realism and the idea of what would happen if an alien invasion like this actually occurred. He loved that it was a story about what it would be like to follow in the shoes of one marine's battalion. Liebesman went on to explain that when they designed the aliens or their machinery or the way they would arrive, he made sure that it felt like it all had a purpose and that it could all work, like how everything in James Cameron's movies is fully "functional." The aliens have tactics and every way they work together and everything they do was design to feel very real.
As for the footage, although all of the effects weren't finished yet, it really did look like an awesome, intense action movie set right in the thick of a crazy alien invasion in Los Angeles. There are some awesome effects sequences (like the new photo below I've added) and then we get to see some very intimate moments with a soldier who gets separated. I can't wait for Sony to unveil an actual trailer for you to see, it just looks badass. They didn't show too much of the aliens, but we do get to see some of their weapons and ships, and it looks like a full-on attack. Can't wait to see this in March, it will be THE event movie that month that's for sure!