First Image from Alexander Payne’s ‘Downsizing’ Released

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The first look at Alexander Payne’s “Downsizing” is finally here, and it’s fairly accurate to its odd storyline. The film stars Matt Damon (“The Martian”), Kristen Wiig (“Bridesmaids”), and Laura Dern (“Wild”), and presents a strange, satirical solution to the growing threats of immigration and the environment. Check the photo out below, which accompanied an EW interview with Payne about the film.

Official still from Alexander Payne’s “Downsizing” via EW, featuring Matt Damon, Kristen Wiig, and Laura Dern.

In Payne’s words:

Downsizing imagines what might happen if overpopulation and climate change [prompt] Norwegian scientists to discover how to shrink people down to five inches tall and propose, very earnestly, the population’s two-to-three-hundred-year transition from big to small.

The films follows a couple who decides to downsize, as the benefits seem too good to pass up. But what will happen when one partner decides to back out at the last minute?

According to EW, the film’s script took over a decade to finalize, and Payne worked on the script between two of his critically acclaimed hits, “Sideways” and “The Descendants.” Financing was also hard to secure, due to the comedy’s unique premise and the need for a big visual effects budget. Payne was even told “Downsizing” was “too intelligent to justify the budget it requires.” However, he went on to say that he believes audiences are often more intelligent than one would expect, and wants audiences to judge the film for themselves.

Payne wrote the script with frequent collaborator Jim Taylor (“Sideways”), who’d been playing with “Downsizing’s” idea with his brother before they began writing. While they finished the screenplay in 2009, the film project was not picked up until recently, leaving time for rewrites. However, when asked if the pair adjusted the script to directly address modern issues, Payne replied, “We never do that;” earlier on, he’d also demurred from calling “Downsizing” political. However, the director did say:

[Downsizing] takes something inherently absurd, but it tells it with utter earnestness. We’re more interest in making human films [but Downsizing is] an interesting prism through which to view our times.

“Downsizing” hits theaters Dec. 22.

Will you be watching “Downsizing” in December? Let us know in the comments below!