The Day After Tomorrow (2004) Poster


Lindsay Lohan was in talks to play Laura and came close to signing a contract to star in the film. She had to back out last minute due to major scheduling conflicts.
Jump to: Cameo (2) | Director Trademark (1) | Spoilers (3)
20th Century Fox invited a group of scientists to preview the film, to test their reactions to the science used in the film. None of the scientists were impressed with what they saw, although most conceded that the movie was enjoyable nonsense.
The river crossing scene was actually filmed on the US-Mexico border, and the extras really were crossing the Rio Grande into Mexico.
The consultation by NASA scientists was requested before the filming of the movie, but NASA stated that the events in the film were too ridiculous to actually occur, and hence denied the request. NASA sent a memo out to all of its employees stating that they were not allowed to comment on the likelihood of the events portrayed, but later rescinded this restriction.
The US Army loaned several UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters for the rescue scene at the end, prompting the Canadian authorities to reassure the people of Montreal that they weren't being invaded by the USA.
In 2008, Yahoo! Movies listed the film as one of the Top 10 Scientifically Inaccurate Movies.
South Park (1997) creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker managed to get their hands on a copy of this film's script during its pre-production. The two planned to secretly shoot the same film with puppets instead of actors, word for word, and release it on the same day. The duo abandoned these plans after their lawyer convinced them that such a film would never get released.
The film was originally scripted with Sam and his friends as 11-year-olds, but director/screenwriter Roland Emmerich changed them to high school students for Jake Gyllenhaal, who Emmerich had seen in October Sky (1999). Emmerich asked "Can Jake Gyllenhaal play a 17-year-old?"
Roland Emmerich confided that the Statue of Liberty would be turned over by the force of the massive amount of water flowing around it but said he wanted to create a symbol of American values that stood up to the forces.
There was some doubts among the production team about having a major disaster hit New York, especially after 9/11. Ironically, that sensitivity did not appear to be shared by New Yorkers themselves. Whenever it played in the Big Apple, audiences whooped with delight when the city gets hit by an enormous tidal wave.
The casting of Kenneth Welsh as the Vice President was controversial, due to his physical resemblance to then-US Vice-President Dick Cheney. However, Roland Emmerich insisted on it for that very reason, admitting that the characters of the President and Vice-President were intended to be criticism of the Bush/Cheney administration's opposition to the Kyoto Protocol for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
The opening weekend gross of this film, along with the second weekend gross of Shrek 2 (2004), represented the most money ever earned in a single weekend in movie history at that point. This has since been passed and is now the 5th highest grossing weekend ever.
While speaking to fans in Denver, director Roland Emmerich said he became interested in doing a movie involving weather while shooting The Patriot (2000). He said his whole day revolved around what the weather forecast was in order to shoot the outdoor scenes and that he really just wanted to control the weather himself. "The Coming Global Superstorm", a non-fiction novel by Art Bell and Whitley Strieber, was used for reference. Emmerich concedes that while the events portrayed in the film are indeed possible, the time frame over which they take place was implausibly short and tailored for sheer entertainment value. In keeping with the movie's ecological theme, Emmerich paid $200,000 from his own pocket to make the production "carbon-neutral" - the first of its kind in Hollywood - all carbon dioxide emitted by the production was offset by the planting of trees, and investments in renewable energy.
During the party after the first round, Sam's "Hello My Name Is..." sticker bears the name "Yoda".
Emmy Rossum was only 15 years old when she auditioned for the film.
During the filming of the tsunami scene, Jake Gyllenhaal needed to use the restroom very badly, so he went in the water tank.
Roland Emmerich estimated that at least 1000 digital artists worked on the film.
The Red Cross put up several stands at theaters in the U.S. featuring pamphlets with information on what to do to keep safe during tornados, floods, and blizzards for concerned people who had just viewed the film.
The breath appearing out of the actors' mouths in the cold scenes was all put in afterwards with CGI. This proved a more practical way of doing it, rather than freezing the set.
According to Roland Emmerich Emmy Rossum gave Jake Gyllenhaal a deep french kiss during their first read together.
Has the biggest opening weekend gross for a movie that did not reach Number 1 at the US box office.
The opening shot of the ice shelf is completely CG and lasts just over 2 1/2 minutes.
Roland Emmerich started writing the screenplay while he was filming The Patriot (2000). He stopped after 9/11, thinking a disaster movie inappropriate after such a cataclysmic real-life event.
The highest grossing film to be made in Canada.
Nine special effects house worked on the film for over a year.
The flat image of the Earth surface used during the presentation is available to the public and can be downloaded from http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov
Two library-bound survivors ask whether they should burn the works of Friedrich Nietzsche, whose "The Antichrist" states in its preface: "Only the day after tomorrow belongs to me. Some are born posthumously." Part of this line provided this movie's title.
During the point where the people of New York are walking on the frozen ice, the police officer's vest is half-covered, so it reads only "ice."
The footage of the plane that crashed in the Midwest before the FAA's flight ban is actually a stock photo of a January 1990 Avianca Airlines crash on Long Island. The hurricane footage is of Hurricane Iniki (1992) in Hawaii. It was shot by Roland Emmerich's assistant Aaron Boyd, who renamed the storm "Hurricane Noelani" after his Hawaiian wife. The UK blizzard footage is from a January 2002 report.
When the camera pulls away from the Earth after the astronaut exclaims "the air is so clear" the image of the Earth is a modified version of the "Blue Marble" picture created by Robert Simmon. The Blue Marble picture is comprised of thousands of satellite photos, and some of the clouds are duplicated. The Apple iPhone uses the Blue Marble picture as the default wallpaper.
Towards the end of the movie, when the President is giving his "thanking the third-world countries" speech, the channel he is giving the speech on is The Weather Channel.
Harald Kloser's score for the film landed him the gig for AVP: Alien vs. Predator (2004).
The movie had a subplot involving Rick Hoffman that was mostly cut out of the film, where Hoffman and his two friends were unethical businessmen who were working on an illegal securities trading plan with a Japanese colleague. The Japanese man is still shown being struck and killed by mega-hail falling during the ice storm siege, but footage of him talking to Hoffman's character about how they needed to steal money to avoid going to prison was edited out. This explains why Hoffman and his friends are introduced during the massive wave destruction in New York City and appear to be unlikable characters before they're demolished by the water (and their bus is later crushed by the freighter ship), since they had unused footage establishing them as bad guys.
Sam (Jake Gyllenhaal) attends Woodmont Public School in Arlington. This is a real place name, but it's an empty building used primarily for field space, voting, and community meetings.
The building used as the United States Embassy in Mexico was actually the Centro Vida/Life Center Ministries and private school in El Paso, Texas. Mexico is visible from the building, which is on Glory Road near the University. The church and school later moved, vacating the building. The Mexico-United States "bridge" is really an overpass in El Paso which overlooks Mexico in a dramatic way. El Paso's real bridges don't look like that, and security is much stricter with fences and Border Patrol agents. When these scenes were being filmed, local residents were concerned about military-style helicopters landing and flying low over residential neighborhoods, and the streets closed by the filming. Some called the authorities out of fear.
The whole wolves attacking the ship sequence took only 5 days to film.
The Manchester United player who is seen scoring is Dutch striker Ruud van Nistelrooy. It was a friendly game against Boca Juniors of Argentina which took place on 10 August 2002 and whose final score was Manchester United 2 Boca Juniors 0.
Emmy Rossum accepted the role of Laura after Lindsay Lohan had to drop out due to scheduling conflicts. This is the first time that Rossum has stepped In for a role originally meant for Lohan. This would later happen again with Poseidon (2006), another disaster film.
Promoted with Countdown-to-Doomsday style clocks in Cinemas.
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On the bookshelf behind Jack's bed are the novels "Sacred" and "Gone, Baby, Gone" by Dennis Lehane, who also wrote Mystic River (2003) which featured Emmy Rossum.
The idea that Nietschze was incestuous towards his sister is based on an autobiography, "My Sister and I", that is widely believed to be a forgery by Oscar Levy.
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As of 2008, has the second highest gross for a movie that did not reach Number 1 at the US box office, behind My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002).
In the tornado sequence, the janitor is listening to a football match in his headphones. The match he is listening to is Argentina Vs. Peru and the guy commenting the match is Victor Hugo Morales, a famous Argentinian commentator of football matches.
This met with the approbation of Al Gore.
Some movie posters for the film featured a fallen Statue of Liberty which was a design concept which has also been used for not just this film but for others. The titles are The Planet of the Apes (1968), Escape from New York (1981), The Jupiter Menace (1982), and The Day After Tomorrow (2004).
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Kirsten Dunst: When Sam calls his father to tell him the sewer has backed up into the school, Dunst can be seen standing behind Sam near his elbow, her sweater pulled up over her nose and mouth (although in very poor light)
Mark Gordon: The British helocopter pilot who is instantly frozen after the crash.

Director Trademark 

Roland Emmerich: [reflections] When the L.A. weather forecaster looks out the window of the forecast center you can see the reflection of the tornado approaching. This same technique is also visible in the Emmerich film 2012 (2009) when the pyroclastic cloud is seen in the reflection of the glass door as it approaches the airport in Las Vegas.


The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

The movie establishes that the storm will affect all north hemisphere, but that some countries will be free of the ice, between them Spain. Simon's first appearance (Adrian Lester) is saying goodbye to his wife Jeanette (Anne Day-Jones), who is going travel to Spain; Terry Rapson (Ian Holm) comments his wish to be in Spain, safe and sound of the storm; when Jack Hall (Dennis Quaid) exposes his theories to the President, in the map of the TV screen can be seen the ice in Europe stopping in France and Switzerland, leaving Spain and Italy without ice. However, when two astronauts from International Space Station looks planet Earth, they can be seen Spain and Italy full-covered on ice, exactly as the rest of the continent. This is not necessarily a contradiction, but a signal that the storm was more powerful than all scientists have predicted before.
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At a point of the movie can be seen a tsunami approaching New York City, impacting against the heels of Statue of Liberty. It's height at 305 feet (93 meters), including from pedestal to the torch of the right hand, and its right arm is height at 42 feet (almost 13 meters). Adding a plus of 21 feet (seven meters) by the maximum height of the own island above sea level, all theses measures imply that the tsunami is height at 280 feet (85 meters).
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In the movie several tornadoes devastate all Los Angeles' downtown and surrounding. Although it's mentioned by any character, a tornado is measured by its destructive force with the Fujita's Scale. It was named after Tetsuya Fujita, who in 1971 in collaboration with Allan Pearson created a scale to differentiate a twister according the wind speed:

-F0: 60-117 km/h or 45- 72 mph (light damage).

-F1: 117-181 km/h or 73-112 mph (moderate damage).

-F2: 181-250 km/h or 113-157 mph (significant damage).

-F3: 250-320 km/h or 158-206 mph (severe damage).

-F4: 320-420 km/h or 207-260 mph (devastating damage).

-F5: 420-510 km/h or 261-308 mph (incredible damage).

-F6: 510-610 km/h or 309-379 mph (altough initially Fujita scale have five marks, in 1999 a tornado located in Bridge Creek-Moore, Oklahoma, devastated with a force more powerful never seen before. It was the only one F6 registered in history).
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