Netflix has released first-look images and a storyboard from their original film Okja, a bold global adventure from director Bong Joon-ho (Snowpiercer), one of the most creative and visionary filmmakers of our time. Okja stars Tilda Swinton (Hail, Caesar!), Jake Gyllenhaal (Nightcrawler), Paul Dano (Love & Mercy), Lily Collins (Rules Don't Apply), Steven Yeun ("The Walking Dead"), and Giancarlo Esposito ("Breaking Bad").
Hand-selected by Bong, the storyboard depicts scenes from a climactic sequence illustrated by the image of Lily Collins as "Red" running through the streets of Manhattan. The additional image introduces Seo Hyun An as "Mija." Directed by Bong Joon Ho and co-written with Jon Ronson (Frank), Okja follows Mija, a young girl who must risk everything to prevent a powerful, multi-national company from kidnapping her best friend, a massive animal named 'Okja'.
The film will premiere Summer 2017. Okja follows Bong Joon Ho's international hit Snowpeircer, which received worldwide critical acclaim after Ho made a name for himself with the unique and revered monster movie The Host. But when it comes to the massive animal at the center of Okja, Bong is quick to clear up any confusion. This isn't another monster movie, even if the title character is a mysteryous creature. He tells this to Entertainment Weekly.
"It's a very shy and introverted animal. It's a unique animal that we've not seen before."
In the movie, Mija and Okja go on a grand adventure that eventually leads then into New York City. The fantasy adventure thriller will have a story that once again revolves around politics. Joon-ho is known for bringing in very political elements when it comes to his past movies and this won't be any different. He goes onto say this.
"Red is part of a group of animal rights activists that figure into the story," said Joon-ho, who filmed in the Financial District. On Wall Street, it's the heart of capitalism. On the surface is a story about an animal, but it's essentially a story about capitalism."
The production of Okja got quite a lot of attention for casting Walking Dead star Steven Yeun. At the time, Yeun was coming off the Season 6 finale of his hit show, which teased a member of the Alexandria crew dying, turning it into one of the biggest cliffhangers of the TV year. Many believed Yeun's Glenn would be the one to die at the end of Negan's bat, because his casting was announced Okja as Walking Dead Season 7 started production at the same time. As we know now, Glenn did die in the Walking Dead Season 7 opener. But it looks like Yeun has some more exciting projects in the works. Take a look at these first exciting images from Okja, coming to Netflix this summer.