Monday, May 7, 2012

'1952': Disney's top secret movie a UFO epic?

By Robbie Graham Silver Screen Saucers
Saucers grab the headlines following the Washington, D.C. overflights of July, 1952.

Disney has announced that Brad Bird (The Iron Giant, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol) has been set to direct the studio’s upcoming, top secret film project, 1952, the script for which was written last year by Damon Lindelof and Jeff Jensen. 1952is “a closely guarded secret at Disney,” says Deadline, “but it’s a big-scale tentpole film [with] multi-platform aspirations.”

1952’s plot will undoubtedly become the subject of fervent speculation for cinemagoers in the run-up to the movie’s release next year; indeed, the guesswork has already begun over at Craveonline. “It's pointless to speculate,” says Crave’s William Bibbiani, “but also really, really fun, so let's take a look at some of the events that actually occurred in 1952 to see if anything jumps out as a possible tentpole release.”

Bibbiani then provides the following list:

February 7 - Elizabeth II is proclaimed Queen of the United Kingdom. Sounds like Oscar bait to us, but not a tentpole.

February 26 - The USS Wasp aircraft carrier collides with the USS Hobson Destroyer, killing 175 people. Could be a triumph of the human spirit.

February 28 - The "I Love Lucy" episode "The Marriage License" becomes the first television show to be watched by over 10,000,000 viewers in a single night. A Hollywood biopic/farce about the iconic series? Sounds horrible. Let's hope that's not it.

July 19-26 - UFO's allegedly fly over Washington D.C., leading jet fighters to investigate. The UFOs reportedly took evasive action, but returned after the jets left the area. Now that sounds like a Damon Lindelof script.

October 16 - Charlie Chaplin is effectively deported by J. Edgar Hoover, who revoked the famed filmmaker's transit papers while Chaplin was at a premiere of his motion picture Limelight in London. Good drama there, but while the motion picture Chaplin is already 20 years old, it already covered the material before.

November 1 - The first Hydrogen Bomb is successfully tested in the central Pacific Ocean. Maybe Disney's going after their own Godzilla type of franchise?

December 4 - "The Great Smog" strikes London, causing as many as 12,000 deaths from respiratory complications. Spooky, creepy stuff, but is that the sort of thing Brad Bird is into? And unless they come up with some kind of dramatic conspiracy behind it, is something this depressing a potential tentpole film?”

Bibbiani ends by saying: “it would seem that the UFO concept is most rife with summer blockbuster potential, doesn't it?”

Yes, it certainly does, especially given Disney’s rich history of UFO-themed entertainment and in light of the fact that 1952’s screenplay has been penned by the scribe of two other high-profile UFO/alien movies: Cowboys and Aliens (2011) and Prometheus (2012). Could it be that Disney is producing a dramatization of the flying saucer fever that swept America in 1952 – and of the Top Secret UFO-related machinations of the US national security state at that time? Watch this space...


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