Deadline is reporting today that Tom Cruise will star in Joseph Kosinski's OBLIVION, a science fiction epic that sound pretty intriguing, based on the story. OBLIVION's premise (based on the graphic novel, which was written by Kosinski to pitch to various studios) is that Earth is now virtually uninhabitable, with the remaining population living above the clouds. Cruise will play a stranded soldier on the blasted surface who comes across another stranded woman in a crashed spaceship, and together they learn their collective fate and their own connected past. I read the synopsis on Amazon for the graphic novel, and it sounds fairly spoilerish, so I only vaguely described the plot.
OBLIVION was going to be a Disney release, but the studio decided not to go ahead with it, as Kosinski's vision for the film was darker than Disney was willing to go. The film's been budgeted at $100 million, and I'm very happy that this story seems to be based on an pretty original idea. This sounds like Big Idea science fiction, and although my feelings about TRON: LEGACY are well known, if Kosinski cuts loose in a world of his own design I see the potential for an amazing film here. With the new Brad Bird MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE film, ROCK OF AGES, and this, Cruise looks to be coming back to the screen with pretty interesting films. It's unfortunate that AT THE MOUNTAINS OF MADNESS couldn't happen with him as the lead, but this sounds pretty good on its own.