Watch First Space Operatic Trailer for Luc Besson’s ‘Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets’

valerian-posterFrench director, writer, and producer Luc Besson has continued to be attached to numerous successful projects in the decades he’s been active. Some of his more notable projects include the Taken and Transporter trilogies, as well as films that have reached cult status like Leon: The Professional and The Fifth Element.

Lately some of Besson’s directorial efforts have been subpar, including 2011’s The Lady and 2013’s The Family, which currently both maintain “rotten” ratings on 2014’s Lucy, starring Scarlett Johansson, on the other hand, received mostly positive, yet mixed reviews. All that being said, Besson’s 1997 film The Fifth Element remains a fan favorite among science fiction enthusiasts.

Keeping that in mind, Luc Besson is now returning to the genre he is so often praised for contributing to, serving as writer and director for Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. Based on the French graphic novel Valérian and Laureline, created by writer Pierre Christin and artist Jean-Claude Mézières, the film stars Dane DeHaan (Chronicle) and Cara Delevingne (Suicide Squad), as well as Clive Owen, Ethan Hawke, John Goodman, and Rihanna.

Featuring a futuristic, space operatic backdrop, Valerian focuses on a romance that brews between DeHaan’s Valerian and Delevingne’s Laureline, two government special operatives who are sent on a mission to the multi-cultural intergalactic city of Alpha. The city of Alpha serves as a utopia comprised of thousands of alien races all working together to better themselves, though Valerian and Laureline may end up running into certain aliens who disagree with the city’s unity.

Having not read the graphic novel Valerian is based on I can’t speak much about the story, as the recently released trailer focuses primarily on the visual aspects of the film. Played to the tune of a variation on “Because” by The Beatles, Valerian looks visually stunning, featuring a blend of mostly CGI and some practical effects. The film definitely looks like something that can be enjoyed in IMAX 3D. Even though Valerian is based on an established property, it’s nice to see an attempt at an original science fiction epic that’s not Star Wars. Hopefully, Valerian is able to impress audiences and doesn’t go the way of The Wachowski’s original science fiction epic Jupiter Ascending or even Disney’s John Carter.

Check out the first official trailer for the film below and feel free to let us know what you think in the comments. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets lands in theaters July 2017.