J.J. Abrams Gets Ready To Rumble

Working on an earthquake-based movie

J.J. Abrams Gets Ready To Rumble

by Chris Hewitt |
Published on

J.J. Abrams is set to make the earth move.

The hugely prolific writer-producer-director may be still slaving away on his remake of Star Trek (not to mention his TV shows, Lost and Fringe), but that hasn’t stopped him lining up a major new movie which will revolve around a major earthquake hitting a city.

We’d like to think that Abrams, who will team with David Seltzer (who wrote the screenplay for The Omen), was inspired by the recent 5.4 quake that rocked Los Angeles (and had this Empire writer hanging onto his newly-purchased TV for grim life), but he’s probably been working on this for months.

But Universal, the studio that’s bankrolling the project, is hopeful that Abrams will give earthquakes the same spin as he did with monster movies for Cloverfield.

As with that movie, this earthquake flick will focus on relationships, with the big special effects taking a backseat (although they’ll doubtless be there with bells on). But precious little else is known about this, other than that Abrams merely intends to produce the movie, along with Bryan Burk and Sherryl Clark.

But we’re looking forward to this for a couple of reasons: one, with today’s advances in special effects, a movie revolving around a major earthquake has plenty of potential for awe-inspiring and indeed terrifying visuals. Earthquake, the 1974 Chuck Heston that saw L.A. torn apart by a Big One (and of which this movie is emphatically not a remake), did pretty well with models. CG will make the scope even bigger, as Roland Emmerich’s 2012 – in which Los Angeles again experiences a Richter Scale-breaking event – should demonstrate.

And two, we’re delighted to see Seltzer back in business, as his The Omen screenplay is one of the best horror scripts of all time. He has a Strangers On A Train remake set up at Abrams’ production company, Bad Robot, so clearly he’s found a kindred spirit in Abrams.

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