Watch mobile cities battle it out in first trailer for Peter Jackson-produced 'Mortal Engines'

Hera Hilmar in Mortal Engines. (Photo: Universal/MRC)

With his dual J.R.R. Tolkien trilogies in the rearview mirror, Peter Jackson has now turned his eye toward his next literary-based venture — an adaptation of Philip Reeve’s 2001 novel Mortal Engines, which is the first in a four-book series. The Academy Award-winning filmmaker is co-writing and producing the upcoming project, while handing over behind-the-camera duties to Christian Rivers, a visual-effects supervisor and storyboard artist who began working with Jackson decades ago. And from the looks of it, it’ll be a larger-than-life fantasy in the same spirit as their prior collaborations.

Mortal Engines is set in a post-apocalyptic world where resources are scarce thanks to a catastrophic “Sixty Minute War” that decimated the Earth’s environment and destroyed most technological and scientific knowledge. To combat this situation, London was transformed into a mobile metropolis — dubbed a “Traction City” — with the ability to consume other smaller cities. In the upcoming film’s first trailer, moviegoers get quite a look at England’s newfangled capital, a hulking wheeled monstrosity that bears down on a smaller vehicle populated by Mad Max-ish wastelanders, including Hera Hilmar’s Hester Shaw, who — with her face half-covered — watches in horror as London sets about firing spears at her ride, all in an effort to literally devour it. Watch the trailer below.

There are no real plot details offered by this first sneak peek at Mortal Engines, but the unique steampunk visual style depicted in this trailer immediately mark it as another potential genre blockbuster from the reliable Jackson.

Mortal Engines arrives in theaters on Dec. 14, 2018.

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