So, What’s ‘Tomorrowland’ About Anyway? We Asked George Clooney

Image courtesy of Walt Disney Pictures.

You’ve probably seen the trailers, posters, and billboards for Tomorrowland, but if you still have no idea what the movie is actually about, don’t worry. You’re not alone. According to the filmmakers, you’re not supposed to know yet. When it comes to explaining anything specific about the story, everyone involved has been pretty coy so far.

Of course, the secret will be out when the film opens on May 22, but if you can’t wait until then, we’ve got a fun teaser about some of Tomorroland‘s themes and big ideas from none other than star George Clooney himself.

What we can say about the story is what you probably know already, at least if you’ve seen the promos. It involves a STEM-savvy teenage girl named Casey (Britt Robertson), who receives a mysterious pin with one amazing property: Whenever she touches it, she is instantly transported to a wondrous, futuristic place called Tomorrowland. When the pin loses its power, she searches for a way back and meets up with a strange little girl (Raffey Cassidy), who in turn leads her to a gruff old genius named Frank Walker (Clooney). Together, they embark on a quest as the fate of both worlds hangs in the balance.

At a recent press event to promote the film, Clooney talked about what initially drew him to the project. He said he was intrigued by the originality of the idea and how it differed from your typical summer blockbuster.

“First and foremost, I think it is a really bold thing for Disney to be willing to do a film that isn’t a sequel and isn’t a comic book,” Clooney said. “I just loved the idea of, you know, we live in a world right now where you turn on your television set and it’s rough out there. And it’s not fun. And it can really wear on you after a period of time. And we see generations now feeling as if it’s sort of hopeless, in a way. And what I love about it is it sort of speaks to the idea that your future is not preordained and predestined, and that if you’re involved, a single voice can make a difference and I believe in that. I happen to believe in it, and so I loved the theme or the idea that, you know, there’s still so much that we can all do to make things better.”

Image courtesy of Walt Disney Pictures.

There was another thing that especially stood out for him when he first read the script. And it wasn’t necessarily a good thing.

“I have to say, just so we’re clear, when [writer Damon Lindelof] and [writer-director Brad Bird] showed up at my house, they said, ‘We’ve got a part that we’ve written for you,'” Clooney recalled. “And then I opened up the description of the character and it’s a 55-year-old has-been, and I’m kind of going, ‘Hang on a minute, which part am I reading for?'”

At the core of this genre-defying adventure tale is the choice between pessimism and optimism, and how that choice can shape the world. As to whether he related to the struggle between the two points of view, Clooney said he remains positive about the future.

“I didn’t ever have that great disappointment in mankind,” he said. “I always felt like it was going to work out in the end. And I still feel that way. And so what I loved about the film was that it reminds you that, you know, young people, they’re not born and start out their lives cynical, or angry, or bigoted. You have to be taught all of those things. And I watch the world now and think I see really good signs from young people out there. And I feel as if the world will get better. And I’ve always been an optimist. I’ve been a realist, but I’ve been an optimist about it. And I really related to the film because Brad and Damon want to tell a story that’s an entertainment, because first and foremost, it has to be an entertainment. But it is hopeful, and I’ve always felt that way myself.”

And really, if George Clooney can continue to have faith in the future of humanity, so can we all.

GeekMom attended a press event that included a free screening of Tomorrowland.