Getting Cosmic with Cloud Atlas
Neo Seoul, which was partly inspired by Blade Runner, is a dystopian world where the oceans have risen above ground and the wealthy keep building higher and higher and the poorer communities are under constant threat. So you've got great walls holding out the water and areas that are half-submerged have buildings poking out from underneath, with floating slum dwellings latched onto some of the structures.
"As with any science fiction film, we had to develop a lot of technology, and the directors had the idea of this transit system that was floating almost in some kind of plasma," Glass explains. "But we created a logic behind it with the vehicles feeding off some central control system. We imagined that on the central control system everything ran at the same speed, but that's visually very boring, so we broke it up and created traffic jams, which was more interesting."
They wanted the screen devices known as Orisons to be original as well, so they surrounded the characters with an app that hovers on its own even more so than in Minority Report. And it was opaque but still three dimensional.
Weaponry too was unique. They conceived of a handgun with a comic book-like muzzle flash that has black dots that comes out of the early graphic novels of Jack Kirby. They described it as extracting energy out of the atmosphere and creating areas void of mass.