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Edwin Hodge Reveals How An On-Set Flub Made It Into The Tomorrow War's Final Cut - Exclusive

Film and television star Edwin Hodge understands the meaning of service. He's the child of two military veterans, and a cast member in projects like TV series "Six," which is based on the real-life stories of Navy SEAL Team Six. Hodge plays a military veteran in his latest film, too — the sci-fi thriller "The Tomorrow War" — but taking the fight to extra-terrestrials apparently took the veteran performer to a whole new headspace.

The difference this time around, as Hodge explained to Looper in an exclusive interview, was the empty performance space on set, a result of the film's reliance on VFX, all of which were added in post-production. "It's interesting, I've been shooting guns and doing battling scenes, God, I want to say over half of my career now, and it's always different," Hodge said. "This time it was completely different, because we literally had to use our imagination the entire time." At the very least, Hodge noted, he, Chris Pratt, and his fellow actors had an idea of what the aliens looked like, and "an idea of how they moved."

"So, when the set designers come on, and the choreographers come on, and they're like, 'Listen, we're going to have an alien running down the building,' 'He's going to do this,' 'He's going to jump,' and 'He's going to land here,' we already have the visual constructs in our head and our minds," Hodge recalled. "So, as artists, which we always do, is create things in our head, we were able to easily feel, jump into the moment, into the mood. Once again, you have six actors who are essentially playing make believe, and we want to have the most fun as possible."

Hodge describes a happy accident on set

Now streaming exclusively on Amazon Prime Video, "The Tomorrow War" stars Pratt as Dan, a military veteran, teacher, and family man who feels like he's stuck at a career crossroads. Hodge stars in the pivotal role of Dorian, a veteran with several tours of duty under his belt, who has been hardened by the horrors of what he's seen. Naturally, the action is fast and intense in "The Tomorrow War," and according to Hodge, not everything you see is completely planned out. In fact, one accidental scene featuring Hodge looked so good that director Chris McKay was compelled to work it into the movie.

"There's actually a take where I stumble and I fall, and my gun goes off. It was a complete accident, but they used it in the film, and they used it to have me kill an alien; it was crazy how they mixed it in," Hodge said. "Sometimes we messed up, sometimes we found little nuggets within the flaws of shooting, and we would just roll with it."

When it came time to see the completed visual effects in the final cut of "The Tomorrow War," Hodge said it was hard to contain his excitement. "Beginning to end this movie was a thrill ride, it was an adventure, for sure. I had an idea looking at the script of what it may be, I had a more defined idea at the table read. But seeing the aliens come to life for the first time, that first introduction in the stairwell, my jaw was on the floor. I was like, 'I'm in this movie, this is cool' — they did an amazing job," Hodge enthused. "Like I always say, I think we have the ultimate alien, this thing can do everything, and it's probably one of the hardest to kill. So, I think the fans who love this type of stuff, fans of aliens and who are looking for the next coolest alien out there, I think they will be thoroughly impressed by our villains here."

Also starring Yvonne Strahovski, Betty Gilpin, Sam Richardson, Keith Powers and J.K. Simmons, "The Tomorrow War" is streaming exclusively on Amazon Prime Video.