First look at the sci-fi world of Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s new movie, Big Bug

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Jean-Pierre Jeunet has been hard at work on a new sci-fi movie – and images have appeared giving us hints as to what’s in store.

One day, Jean-Pierre Jeunet says, he received an email from Netflix’s David Kosse simply asking if there was any film he would like to make for them. He replied rapidly. As you would.

The result, Jeunet says, was “Enthusiastic teams, total freedom, sufficient budget.” It’s all being put to work in the service of Big Bug, a new science fiction film that’s currently in post production. 

Here’s an image of one of the film’s locations, courtesy of cinematographer Thomas Hardmeier’s blog.

Maybe it’s just me but that image is giving off some strong Terry Gilliam vibes, and not for the first time in Jeunet’s career. Compare it to some shots in Brazil filmed at the Palacio d’Abraxas, Noisy-le-Grand, in Jeunet’s native France.

I don’t think Jeunet shot on that location, or any location, however – that looks like a remarkable bit of model work to me. Just by eyeball. Without my glasses on.

[EDIT: I should have put my glasses on. Turns out that’s the exact same Ricardo Bofill development that features in Gilliam’s Brazil, just from a very different angle.]

Big Bug features Elsa Zilberstein, Alban Lenoir, Stéphane de Groodt, Isabelle Nanty, Youssef Hadji, Claire Chust, François Levantal, and Claude Perron in its cast, some of whom are playing robots. There are also some actual, or near-actual, robots in the cast – I’m intrigued to see what those look like, and doubly intrigued to see what kind of role they have in the finished film.

Here’s the one previous image from the set, released by Netflix during production. At that point Big Bug was scheduled for release this year. Maybe it still is… it’s hard to tell with Netflix before there’s any kind of announcement.

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