The weird and wonderful world of Luc Besson’s The Fifth Element is returning to theaters for special screenings next month, celebrating 20 years since Korben Dallas and Leeloo first graced the big screen. The anniversary screenings will debut a new 4K restoration of the cult classic, with the added bonus of an exclusive early look at some of Besson’s upcoming work.
Released in May 1997, The Fifth Element was Luc Besson’s first foray into the world of science fiction, but it left a mark on the genre that is still felt today. The futuristic world Besson built with a blend of digital and practical effects has aged incredibly well and as a result, The Fifth Element has gone on to win more and more fans year after year. Despite this success, Besson has remained largely absent from the sci-fi genre. His last genre movie, Lucy, was a box office success, but it didn’t match many fans’ high expectations But hope could be on the way because, this summer brings the release of Besson’s latest sci-fi movie, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, which looks to be a visual and spiritual sibling of the Canadian director’s earlier work. It’s natural, then, that during these special anniversary screenings of The Fifth Element audience members will get the added bonus of an exclusive early look at Besson’s latest movie.
Whereas The Fifth Element sees a cosmic evil threatening Earth, Valerian will have an even wider-reaching narrative scale. It’s based on a popular French comic and looks set to provide some serious space opera action as it follows two heroes on a mission to save a city that serves as the nexus of the galaxy. The movie’s trailer (seen below) suggests that Valerian will bring dozens of weird and wonderful alien beings to the big screen, all set to a beautiful, albeit heavily computer-generated, cosmic backdrop.
The screenings will be held on Sunday, May 14, and Wednesday, May 17, at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. local time. Theaters across the country are participating in the event, and you can purchase tickets via event organizers Fathom Events.