I Am Number Four (film)
|I Am Number Four|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||D. J. Caruso|
|Produced by||Michael Bay|
|Based on||I Am Number Four
by Pittacus Lore
|Music by||Trevor Rabin|
|Distributed by||Walt Disney Studios
|Box office||$149.9 million|
I Am Number Four is a 2011 American teen science fiction action thriller film directed by D. J. Caruso and starring Alex Pettyfer, Timothy Olyphant, Teresa Palmer, Dianna Agron, and Callan McAuliffe. The screenplay, by Alfred Gough, Miles Millar, and Marti Noxon, is based on Pittacus Lore's young adult novel of the same name.
Produced by Michael Bay, I Am Number Four was the first film production from DreamWorks Pictures to be released by Touchstone Pictures, as part of the studio's 2009 distribution deal with Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. The Hollywood Reporter estimated the budget to be between $50 million and $60 million. The film was released in both conventional and IMAX theatres on February 18, 2011, recevied generally mixed reviews but was a box office success with grossing $149 million.
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John Smith is an alien from the planet Lorien. He was sent to Earth as a child with eight others to escape the invading Mogadorians, who destroyed Lorien. Here, John is protected by a Cepan, or guardian, Henri. Together, they live in a beach-side bungalow in Florida.
The Mogadorians, led by the Commander, learn about the nine children and come to Earth to find them. The Loric Garde can only be killed in sequence; Number One through Number Nine. Three of them have already been killed. John becomes aware that he is next while swimming in the ocean with a girl. He suffers sharp pain, his leg begins to glow, and he sees a vision of Number Three warning him of the coming danger. The girl and the other people on the beach, who record the event happening in the ocean, run from John. When the video and pictures surface on the internet, Henri deletes them all, gathers up his and John's belongings, and decides to move to an old farm in Paradise, Ohio. A small lizard is able to crawl in along with their belongings.
John and Henri arrive in Paradise and begin settling into their new home. As night falls, the lizard transforms into a dog. That night, Henri and John hear a noise outside and, upon investigation, find the dog, who is then brought inside by John. He decides to name the dog Bernie Kosar (after Cleveland Browns quarterback Bernie Kosar). The following morning, at John's insistence, Henri allows John to go to the local high school rather than be home schooled.
On his first day there, John goes to the office to receive his class schedule. While waiting, he sees a girl being scolded by a teacher in the principal's office. After John is given his schedule and the girl is let off by the principal, the girl is asked by the secretary to guide John to his locker and first class. At this time, John falls for the girl, who is an amateur photographer named Sarah Hart. As Sarah walks away, a guy walks up to John with a couple of his friends and introduces himself as Mark James. As Mark walks away, John watches him slam another boy into the lockers and throw the boy's skateboard away. John retrieves it and gives it back to the boy, whose name is Sam Goode. Later that day at lunch, John befriends Sam when one of Mark's friends throws a football at Sam's head, knocking him to the ground. John helps Sam up and throws the ball back with enough force to knock Mark's friend to the ground. After this, John notices Sarah taking an interest in him, as she's taking pictures of him from a distance.
That night at home, John discovers a website run by Sarah. It contains pictures of many of the people of Paradise, including a section dedicated to him. As he views the site, it is erased by Henri. At the same time back in Florida, the Mogadorians discover the burnt wreck of Henri and John's old home and determine that John was not killed in the fire.
The next day, while John is being bothered by Mark during a film in one of his classes, John's hands begin to glow and burn brightly, similar to the glow on his leg in the ocean, and he sweats profusely. He runs from the classroom and into a janitorial closet to soak his hands in water to calm the burning. Henri, alerted by a Loric box that he has kept, comes to John and explains that the glowing is the awakening of John's "legacies". As these powers grow, John will become more powerful but, in order to maintain a low profile, Henri forbids John from using these powers. John disobeys, sneaks out of his house, and goes to a nearby forest where he finds that he is able to throw large rocks at supersonic speeds, run faster than he ever could before, and survive long falls with ease.
Later that night, John goes into town to walk around for a bit and runs into Sarah. He confronts her about the pictures that he found on her website and she admits to being an avid photographer. As they walk together, they see Sam across the street being yelled at by his step-father. John walks Sarah the rest of the way to her house, where she invites him in for dinner with her family. Her parents seem to like John and suggest that he and Sarah go to the carnival together. After dinner, John and Sarah head up to her room. She shows John some of her favorite photos that she has taken. John finds a scrapbook of personal photos that Sarah's taken of herself along with things she's written but she takes it back before he can read much of it. Bernie Kosar shows up outside of Sarah's house, barking loudly, and John gets up to leave. Sarah gives him a camera of her own for him to keep and they nearly kiss but John leaves quickly because of Bernie Kosar's constant barking.
The following day at school, Sam asks about the lights in class but John passes it off as a prank with some flashlights. As Sam is warning John to stay away from Sarah, their lockers explode with pink paint placed by Mark. John's hands begin to glow again but he's able to hide it by clenching his fists, as he narrowly avoids getting into a fight with Mark. While John and Sam are cleaning up in the bathroom, Sam tells John about how he and his father used to go looking for aliens, though his father suddenly disappeared one day.
During the Spring Fair, Sarah explains to John that she and Mark used to date. She talked about how she had "refused to be his personal cheerleader" and instead wanted to be a photographer. Mark had told her that she was being snobby and convinced the entire school that she was crazy. John and Sarah go on a haunted wagon ride through the woods. When they get off, Mark's friends tackle John and begin to beat him while one brings Sarah to Mark. John uses his legacies to fend them off and rescue Sarah. Sam witnesses John's use of his legacies and John reveals his true origins to Sam. The next day, Mark's father, the local sheriff, interrogates Henri on John's whereabouts when his son and his friends were attacked, where John says he wasn't paying any attention to Mark, since he was with a girl.
Henri tells John that too many people are suspicious of them, so they have to leave. John refuses because he doesn't want to leave Sarah. Meanwhile, the Mogadorians continue searching for John, while being trailed by a mysterious woman who is also trying to locate Number Four.
The Mogadorians eventually locate John and manipulate two conspiracy theorists into capturing Henri. When John and Sam go to rescue him, they are attacked, but manage to fend the Mogadorians off. Just before escaping, John and Sam grab Henri's knife and a Loric artifact; a blue rock that acts as the first half of a tracking device that locates other Loric children. Knowing who Sam is, Henri reveals that his father was an ally that was helping them. As John, Henri, and Sam begin to drive away in Sam's truck, Henri is stabbed through the chest while trying to protect John from a Mogadorian. John throws the Mogadorian from the truck with his telekinesis and they drive away. Henri later dies in John's arms after telling him to find the remaining children, as their combined powers would be enough to stop the Mogadorians. Sam reveals to John that he has another rock, very similar to the one found with the conspiracy theorists. While Sam searches for it in his house, John tries to say goodbye to Sarah at a party. Mark sees John and calls his father, who corners John and Sarah on the roof of the house that the party is being thrown at. As Sarah stands up, she slips from the roof. John saves Sarah from a fall with his telekinesis, revealing his powers in the process, and they escape to their high school.
Meanwhile, the Commander arrives in Paradise in a convoy of trucks. He confronts Mark and his father. After injuring the sheriff, the Commander forces Mark to lead him to where John is hiding. Mark takes him to the school, which he knows is Sarah's hideout.
There, John, Sarah and Sam are attacked by the Mogadorians, who brought two giant monsters to hunt the trio. They are saved by Number Six and Bernie Kosar. Number Six reveals that Bernie Kosar is a Chimera that can shapeshift and was sent by John's biological parents to protect him. John and Number Six fight the Mogadorians using their powers; Number Six uses her invisibility powers and John blocks energy attacks with telekinesis. Meanwhile, Bernie Kosar, now in his true chimera form, fights one of the Mogadorians' monsters in the school's showers. He is able to defeat the monster. Eventually, having ended up on the school's football stadium, John and Number Six defeat all of the Mogadorians, including the Commander, who dies in a large explosion triggered by John igniting the Commander's bandoleer of ammunition. John survives this explosion when Number Six stands between him and the blast, revealing her ability to resist fire.
The following day, Number Six unites John's and Sam's blue rocks and discovers the location of the other four surviving Garde. John allows Sam to come with them with the hope of one day finding Sam's father. They set off to find the others so they can all protect Earth from the Mogadorians. They leave behind Sarah and a repentant Mark, who lies to his father about John's whereabouts and returns the box left to John by his dad that was in police evidence. Before leaving, John promises to return to Paradise one day and kisses Sarah one last time. Just before getting in to Sam's truck, Bernie Kosar, with a visibly injured paw, limps up to John.
John, Sam, and Bernie Kosar leave together in Sam's truck, being led by Number Six on her motorcycle to where ever the next of the Loric Garde may be.
- Alex Pettyfer as John Smith/Number Four/Daniel Jones
- Timothy Olyphant as Henri
- Teresa Palmer as Number Six
- Dianna Agron as Sarah Hart
- Callan McAuliffe as Sam Goode
- Kevin Durand as Mogadorian Commander
- Jake Abel as Mark James
- Jeff Hochendoner as Sheriff James
- Judith Hoag as Mrs. Hart
- Cooper Thornton as Mr. Hart
- Charles Carroll as Sam's stepfather
- Brian Howe as Frank
- Ken Beck as Jackson
- Emily Wickersham as Nicole
- Patrick Sebes as Kevin
- Andy Owen as Bret
- Beau Mirchoff as Drew
- Tucker Albrizzi (uncredited) as Tuck
The film was produced by DreamWorks and Reliance Entertainment. Film producer and director Michael Bay brought the manuscript of the young adult novel I Am Number Four to Stacey Snider and Steven Spielberg at DreamWorks. A bidding war developed for the film rights between DreamWorks and J.J. Abrams, with DreamWorks winning the rights in June 2009, with the intention of having Bay produce and possibly direct the project. The rights were purchased with the hope of attracting teenage fans of The Twilight Saga films, and the potential of establishing a film franchise, with at least six more installments planned by the book's publisher.
Al Gough and Miles Millar, the creators of the television series Smallville, were hired to write the screenplay in August 2009. Marti Noxon, writer and producer for the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, also contributed to the screenplay. D. J. Caruso was brought on to direct in early 2010, after Bay opted to focus on directing the third film of the Transformers series. Caruso had been selected by Spielberg to direct Disturbia and Eagle Eye for DreamWorks, and had success with both films. Caruso had less than a year to prepare, shoot and edit the film, due to a worldwide release date set for Presidents Day weekend.
Chris Bender, J.C. Spink, and David Valdes executive produced the film. Steven Spielberg contributed to the film's characters, but did not take a credit on the film. It was the first DreamWorks film to be released by Disney's Touchstone Pictures label, as part of the 30-picture distribution deal between DreamWorks and Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. The film was also the first release for DreamWorks after the studio's financial restructuring in 2008.
In March 2010, Alex Pettyfer was in talks to play the title character in the film, Number Four. It was later confirmed that the 21-year-old British actor would play the lead. Sharlto Copley was going to star as Henri, Number Four's guardian and mentor, but had to drop out due to press obligations with his film The A-Team. Copley was replaced by Timothy Olyphant. Kevin Durand plays the villain of the film, Commander, the Mogadorian who leads the hunt for the Lorics on Earth.
DreamWorks went through multiple rounds of tests to find the right actress for the female romantic lead. Dianna Agron, a star in the Fox television series Glee, won the role. She plays Sarah Hart, a girl who used to date a high school football player, but falls for Number Four and keeps his secret. Jake Abel plays the football player, Mark James, an antagonist in the film. Teresa Palmer plays the other Loric, Number Six, and 16-year-old Australian actor Callan McAuliffe plays Sam Goode, Number Four's best friend.
Principal photography began on May 17, 2010, using 20 locations all within the Pittsburgh metropolitan area. DreamWorks selected the area primarily due to tax incentives from the Pennsylvania Film Production Tax Credit. The film studio also had a positive experience shooting She's Out of My League in Pittsburgh in 2008. The production was scheduled to last 12 to 13 weeks.
Cinematographer Guillermo Navarro shot the film on 35 mm, using a format known as Super 1:85. Beaver, the former Conley Inn in Homewood, and nearby Buttermilk Falls were used as locations in the film; interior and exterior scenes were shot near a boat launch in Monaca. A spring fair scene was filmed in Deer Lakes Park in West Deer; Port Vue, North Park, New Kensington and Hyde Park were also used as locations. The setting of the film's fictional town of Paradise, Ohio is Vandergrift, Pennsylvania, where filming took place from June to July 2010. Producers chose Vandergrift as the "hero town" of the film because of its unique look and curved streets, laid out by Frederick Law Olmsted, the designer of New York City's Central Park.
Franklin Regional High School in Murrysville was chosen over 50 other schools in the area, due to its proximity to nearby woods, a part of the film's plot, and its surrounding hills. The school was also selected for its one floor layout, wide hallways, and its football stadium in front. Teachers and recent graduates appear in the film, and a set that replicates the school was built in a studio in Monroeville for filming explosion scenes. In the last few weeks of production, scenes were filmed at the 200-year-old St. John's Lutheran Stone Church in Lancaster Township. Additional filming took place in the Florida Keys in the beginning of the film in Big Pine Key, Florida as well as the spanning of the drive over the bridge showcases the keys 7 mile bridge.
A teaser trailer for the film was issued in late September 2010, and a full-length trailer premiered on December 8. Advertisements ran in Seventeen and Teen Vogue magazines, Disney released a promotional iPhone app in January 2011. Disney also developed a lot of Internet content to target a teen audience with their marketing campaign. A cast tour, in association with American retailer Hot Topic, and cast media appearances were scheduled to lead up to the release of the film.
The film was released by Touchstone Home Entertainment on Blu-ray, DVD, and digital download on May 24, 2011. The release was produced in three different packages: a three-disc Blu-ray, DVD, and "Digital Copy" combo pack, a single-disc Blu-ray, and a single-disc DVD. The "Digital Copy" included with the 3-disc version is a stand-alone disc that allows users to play the film from any location via iTunes or Windows Media Player. All releases include bloopers and the "Becoming Number 6" featurette, while the single-disc Blu-ray and three-disc Blu-ray, DVD, and "Digital Copy" combo pack versions additionally include six deleted scenes with an introduction from the director. In its first three weeks of release, 316,081 Blu-ray units were sold in the US, bringing in $7,693,808. As of October 2, 2011, the standard DVD of 'I am Number Four' has sold 767,692 copies in the United States, generating $12,571,326, and thus bringing the total gross to $166,247,931.
I Am Number Four grossed $55,100,437 at the North American box office and $90,778,000 overseas, for a worldwide total of $149,878,437. It topped the worldwide box office on its second weekend (February 25–27, 2011) with $28,086,805.
The film opened at number two in the United States and Canada with a gross of $19,449,893. In its second weekend, it dropped 43.4%, earning $11,016,126. The only other market where it has grossed over $10 million is China. It began in third place with $3.4 million, but had an increase of 91% in its second week, topping the box office with $6.4 million. In its third week, it decreased by 21% to $5.0 million. As of March 27, 2011, it has grossed $17,328,244.
Review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes reported a 33% approval rating with an average rating of 4.8/10 based on 158 reviews. The website's consensus reads, "It's positioned as the start of a franchise, but I Am Number Four's familiar plot and unconvincing performances add up to one noisy, derivative, and ultimately forgettable sci-fi thriller." Metacritic gives the film an average score of 36 out of 100, based on reviews from 30 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews".
Empire Magazine gave the film three out of a possible five stars and said, "If you can make it through the bland schmaltz of the first half you'll be rewarded with a spectacular blast of sustained action and the promise of even better to come. This could be the start of something great."
- "Radioactive" - Kings of Leon
- "Tighten Up" - The Black Keys
- "Rolling in the Deep" - Adele
- "Somebody's Watching Me" - Rockwell
- "Shelter" - The xx
- "Soldier On" - The Temper Trap
- "Invented" - Jimmy Eat World
- "Curfew" - Beck
- "As She's Walking Away" - Zac Brown Band (ft. Alan Jackson)
- "Letters from the Sky" - Civil Twilight
In 2013, director Caruso was asked if there are any possibilities that The Power of Six will get a movie adaption, he replied: "There’s been some talk in the past couple of months about trying to do something because there is this audience appetite out there [...]. Most of the people on Twitter that contact me from all over the world ask, “Where’s the next movie?” I think DreamWorks is getting those too so it’ll be interesting. I don’t know if I’d be involved, but I know they’re talking about it." 
In a 2015 interview, James Frey, the co-author of the series, said that he hoped more movies would be made.
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|last1=in Authors list (help)
- Gallagher, Brian (12 April 2011). "I Am Number Four Blu-ray and DVD Hit on May 24th". MovieWeb. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
- Moore, Jason (11 April 2011). "I Am Number Four Hits DVD and Blu-ray Combo Pack In May". SciFi Mafia. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
- I am Number Four - DVD Sales
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- "China Box Office Index". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2011-04-21.
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- "I Am Number Four reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- "I Am Number Four Review". Empire Magazine. Retrieved 11 November 2011.
- "Marti Noxon - I Am Number Four Sequel 'Shelved'". contactmusic.com. 16 February 2011. Retrieved 29 August 2014.
- "10 Recently Cancelled Sequels : Not Coming Soon!". contactmusic.com. 2 December 2012. Retrieved 29 August 2014.
- Philbrick, Jamie (18 August 2013). "IAR EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: DIRECTOR D.J. CARUSO TALKS 'STANDING UP,' 'PREACHER,' 'INVERTIGO' AND A POSSIBLE 'I AM NUMBER FOUR' SEQUEL". iamrogue.com. Retrieved 29 August 2014.
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