The Fifth Element is a 1997 English-language French science fiction action film directed by Luc Besson and co-written by Besson and Robert Mark Kamen from a story by Besson. It stars Bruce Willis, Gary Oldman, and Milla Jovovich.
The only hope for mankind is the Fifth Element, who comes to Earth every five thousand years to protect the humans with four stones of the four elements: fire, water, Earth and air. A Mondoshawan spacecraft is bringing The Fifth Element back to Earth but it is destroyed by the evil Mangalores.
Besson started writing the story that became The Fifth Element when he was 16 years old; he was 38 when the film opened in cinemas. Besson wanted to shoot the film in France, but suitable facilities could not be found; filming took place in London and Mauritania, instead. Comics artists Jean “Moebius” Giraud and Jean-Claude Mézières, whose books provided inspiration for parts of the film, were hired for production design. Costume design was by Jean-Paul Gaultier.
At the time of its release, it was the most expensive European film ever made, and remained the highest-grossing French film at the international box office.