Douglas Trumbull Talks About His Next Space Adventure

Douglas Trumbull’s wonderful directorial debut Silent Running is released on Blu-ray today, its first time in this format. The release is limited edition so don’t hang around if you want to pick one up. You should, it’s great.

You can read all about this new release in Masters of Cinema Monthly, and also enter a competition to win the film.

So, as Silent Running arrives on Blu-ray today, what better time to bring news of a new Douglas Trumbull film, and it sounds like a very exciting one.

I was lucky enough to speak with Douglas Trumbull recently and in the midst of our discussion he dropped a few details about what could very well be his next film.

I’m shooting films right now at 120fps in 3D and I know that the result is absolutely stunning but very few people on this planet have actually seen that, yet. I have a very challenging process ahead of me to start demonstrating this and doing at least one film that I want to make.

I have several films lined up but I’ve got one in particular that would lend itself to this. It’s a big space adventure movie. And I’ve got to make the movie and show it in this process and convince people that there’s a very big audience that wants to see this kind of tremendous technological, creative, visual leap forward to much higher quality.

I don’t see right now any visible advantage to go even higher than 120 frames, I think that’s about as much as the human eye can absorb, but combining 120 frames and high brightness and gain screens that are very wide and large with a different seating configuration is a huge epic change that will take some time to effect. But I’m working on it.

You mentioned a space adventure film. I’ve read that you have two scripts in particular that you’re working on and that they have an ecological bent, is that right?

Well, not so much an ecological bent as much as a survival bent. Having to do with reaching for the stars and why we would have to go to the stars. Are we using up this planet at such an exponential rate with population growth and the depletion of the resources that we’re going to have to leave the earth?

I was just at a symposium in Florida last month called ‘The One-Hundred Year Starship Symposium’, that was sponsored by DARPA, and there were a lot of very interesting speakers there and a lot of talk about a very big issue that faces humanity. Which is, how are we going to survive and where are we going to go when we use this place up? Those issues are part of the underpinnings of some of the movies I’m working on.

Check back here to read the whole interview in next month’s Masters of Cinema Monthly, which will include Douglas Trumbull’s thoughts on Silent Running, modern sci-fi films and the future of cinema.

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