Of the many elements of the film that add to sheer and palpable panic facing astronaut Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) as she floats in space is a stretch of time when she’s utterly alone, unable to make contact with Mission Control (voiced by Ed Harris). But at first, the studio suggested that team in Houston should get more face time. “...there are a lot of ideas. People start suggesting other stuff. ‘You need to cut to Houston, and see how the rescue mission goes,’ ”
And that’s not all. Part of the emotional journey of “Gravity” rests on Stone’s backstory, which includes a daughter she lost, but this is all effectively communicated without breaking the single location concept. However, Cuarón was advised to perhaps include some flashbacks in the film and even more. “A whole thing with…a romantic relationship with the Mission Control Commander, who is in love with her. All of that kind of stuff. What else? To finish with a whole rescue helicopter, that would come and rescue her. Stuff like that,” he explained of the some of the ideas that were floated his way.
Man, all that would have made such a wonderful film awful. I’m really glad the studio did not get their way.