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Looper is an upcoming American science fiction film directed by Rian Johnson with a time travel plot.
The film stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Bruce Willis, and Emily Blunt. Filming began in Louisiana on January 24, 2011. The film combines strong corporate influences for dealing with criminal organizations, technology for the time-travel machine itself, as well as film noir, due to the film's dark, gritty, and bloody plot. It is scheduled to be released on September 28, 2012.
In a futuristic gangland, a 25 year-old killer named Joseph Simmons (Gordon-Levitt) works for a Mafia company in Kansas City in the year 2042 as a "Looper", where he kills and disposes of people who are sent by their employers known as "Gat Men" from their corporate headquarters in Shanghai from the year 2072. Loopers, like himself, are used as foot soldiers and are well paid on the terms that all hostages must never escape, including Loopers themselves. Gat Men are New York Accent-sounding men who are hired by a Southern Accented Godfather, who is portrayed by Jeff Daniels, who are being used as sentries, and each Gat Man has been given complete authority and responsibility in controlling their own group of Loopers. When one target arrives however he recognizes the 55 year-old victim (Willis) as himself and hesitates, allowing his older self to escape. The resulting failure of his job causes the Gat Men to come after him, forcing him to fight for his life as he hunts his older self.
Looper is written and directed by Rian Johnson. After Johnson released The Brothers Bloom in 2008, he re-teamed with producer Ram Bergman, who produced Johnson's previous two films, with the goal of starting production of Looper in 2009. In May 2010, Joseph Gordon-Levitt was cast in one of the lead roles, which he would play after completing Premium Rush. Later in the month, Bruce Willis was also cast. In the following October, Emily Blunt joined Gordon-Levitt and Willis. Filming began in Louisiana in January 2011 and continued in Shanghai in April. Shane Carruth, writer and director of Primer, was confirmed to be involved in creating the effects of the film's time travel sequences.
While the film is set in the future, the styling itself is actually a mixture of both retro and contemporary with a futuristic twist. For instance, many of the buildings used for the setting of the film reflect those from the 1930's and 1940's. Even the clothing that the Gat Men wear in the film pays homage to the gangsters of the 1930's and 1940's. However, these costumes actually do have a futuristic look to them, making the gangsters look a lot like Hasidic Jews rather than traditional Mafiosos, only clean-shaven. Many vehicles used for the film are actually from the present day. However, many of them were equipped with solar panels, futuristic wheel plates, cable boxes attached to the back, and as well with other additional features in order for them to fit into this alternate reality. There are actually several other vehicles built for this film that do completely retained their own futuristic appearances as previously shown.
Looper is scheduled to be released in the United States on September 28, 2012. The film's studio Endgame Entertainment negotiated a deal with FilmDistrict at the Cannes Film Festival in May 2011, and FilmDistrict will release the film in the United States through TriStar Pictures.
The Chinese release of the film will reintegrate a number of scenes set in Shanghai that were originally cut due to pacing reasons. The move was requested by Chinese production company DMG Entertainment in order to further appeal to Chinese audiences.
The first trailer for Looper was released on April 12, 2012 and was met with mostly positive feedback. GeekScholars Movie News gave the preview an average score of A- on an A+ to F- scale, praising the film's unique premise as well as Joseph Gordon-Levitt's ability to look, and act, like a young Bruce Willis in the footage shown. A sequence of numbers (07153902935) are displayed on the promotional poster that, if typed as a web address, takes you to a viral website that features the trailer, a hidden image of Jeff Daniels interrogating an injured man and not much else as of June 2nd.