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After a four-year hiatus from taking on any major roles in the world of film, George Clooney is back on screen with the first trailer for The Midnight Sky. Also directed by Clooney, the sci-fi project (coming to Netflix in December) adapts Lily Brooks-Dalton's 2017 novel Good Morning, Midnight. Clooney takes up the role of Dr. Augustine Lofthouse, a lonely scientist stationed in the Arctic, who is desperate to prevent Sully (Felicity Jones) and her fellow astronauts from returning home to a mysterious global catastrophe.
Based on some dialogue from the trailer, it sounds like mankind was — and this isn't very surprising — mistakenly responsible for the planet's demise. To warn the crew members of the Ether, Augustine and a young girl named Iris (played by Caoilinn Springall; she's possibly his daughter) must brave the subzero temperatures in order to send out a message via a larger satellite dish.
The film marks Clooney's second movie dealing with astronauts, after 2013's Gravity. To ensure scientific accuracy on Midnight Sky, the director and his crew worked "with a guy from NASA to make sure that we were using some of their technology." Indeed, the film utilizes Alfonso Cuarón's groundbreaking CGI for this movie's own thrilling space sequences.
The rest of the Ether crew is comprised of: Commander Tom Adewole (The Cloverfield Paradox's David Oyelowo ), Mitchell (Godzilla: King of the Monsters' Kyle Chandler), Sanchez (The Nun's Demián Bichir), and Maya (Hunters' Tiffany Boone).
"I wanted it to be about redemption in a way,” Clooney told Vanity Fair late last month. “I wanted there to be some hopefulness in a fairly bleak story about the end of mankind."
During a separate chat with Empire for the magazine's November issue, the actor/director said: "When I got the script, there was already this feeling of climate change, of anger, and hatred, the kind of undercurrents that do destroy society. So it didn't feel too far from home that if you play that out, in 20 years, this could be the outcome, that it's all man-made. It's the Cassius line [from William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar]: 'The fault, dear Brutus, lies not in the stars, but in ourselves.' It's that — the idea that we cause these problems. And we can fix them."
Penned by Mark L. Smith (The Revenant, Overlord), The Midnight Sky lands on Netflix Wednesday, Dec. 23. In the meantime, check out some new production stills in the gallery below.