Elysium

No moviegoer walks into a theater excited about all the brands they’re about to see featured onscreen, but when a typical tentpole budget falls in the nine-figure range, product placement is a necessary evil. And sometimes, “evil” really seems like the best word to describe it — there’s nothing more obnoxious than a film that stops in its tracks so the hero can extol the virtues of a certain soft drink.

But Neill Blomkamp is hoping that the judicious use of product placement in Elysium will actually enhance the movie instead of taking away from it. Rather than simply tossing in any company that’d fork over the dough, Blomkamp went to pains to find brands that fit into his futuristic world. Read more about which companies he chose and why after the jump.

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Here’s the Elysium trailer you’ve been waiting for. This one shows more of District 9 director Neill Blomkamp‘s vision of a crappy everyday life on Earth, as a character played by Matt Damon tries to deal with the automated law enforcement of the trashed planet.

The trailer sets up a lot more of the first act, showing the accident that leaves Damon’s character in critical condition, and establishes the deal that leads him to Elysium, where the wealthy and powerful reside. We don’t get to know too much about the Elysium leader played by Jodie Foster, but we see a lot of action leading up to her role in the movie, and quite a bit of her stalking about. Despite the 3-minute length, this trailer doesn’t seem to give too much away.

Check out the footage below. Read More »

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Neill Blmokamp has been done with his second feature film, Elysium, for a while. We had to wait to see it as Sony decided August was a better release window than March. So on August 9 we’ll get a look at the film that casts Matt Damon as a desperate member of the economic underclass who invades Elysium, the orbital society of the wealthy.

In the meantime, the writer/director is already at work on his third feature, Chappie. The film, which features Sharlto Copley in a lead role, is described as a strange sci-fi comedy with a “ridiculous robot character,” but we haven’t known much more about it. Now  we know that Chappie will expand upon Blomkamp’s 2003 short film Tetra Vaal. See that short and get some new Chappie info below, along with a new TV spot for Elysium. Read More »

2013 Summer Movie Preview

Trailers! Who has time to watch them all? There are something like forty wide releases due out this summer alone. If you assume each trailer runs about two minutes, that’s about an hour and half of your life you’ll never get back. That’s time you could’ve spent actually watching one of these movies.

If you only watch one trailer this spring, then, you’ll want to make it this one. This three-minute supercut teases most of the season’s biggest releases, from Iron Man 3 to The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. It’s surprisingly coherent, which may suggest that these titles aren’t as different as the filmmakers would like us to think. Or maybe it just proves that with the right music and some skillful editing, you can totally change the meaning of any scene. In any case, watch it after the jump.

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Neill Blomkamp‘s second film, Elysium, has been done for a while. Originally set for release in March of this year, the film was pushed back to August, reportedly so that Sony could take advantage of a better release window.

While we don’t know much more about the reasons for the delay, we do know that the footage from the film looks great. We saw a presentation at Comic Con 2012, and the same footage was shown off by Sony yesterday, along with the trailer. Now we can show you that trailer, which sets up both a trashed, dirty, slum-like Earth, and Elysium, the shiny orbital colony in which the wealthy reside. Matt Damon plays a wounded man whose ticket to potential salvation on Elysium is bound up in a contract that makes him an enemy of the rich and powerful.

Just that info about the setup lets you know that some of Blomkamp’s socio-political concerns recur from his debut District 9. While this trailer probably doesn’t show off the full scope of the film’s action — you’ll barely even see Sharlto Copley, as the bearded antagonist — it will definitely let you know what the film looks like. Read More »

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Sony held an event today in four cities across the world to launch to buzz for District 9 director Neill Blomkamp‘s new film Elysium. Fans in the four cities were invited to the event through the film’s viral website. Blomkamp, producer Simon Kinberg and co-star Sharlto Copley were in attendance at the Arclight Cinemas in Hollywood to answer questions.

Star Matt Damon also answered questions from a theater in Germany, with his appearance also simulcast to the other venues. The event was to premiere the first trailer for Elysium, which will be online tomorrow at some point. But the filmmakers also screened a 10-minute sizzle reel of footage from the movie. Get our thoughts on the footage in a video blog we recorded, after the jump.

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When Disney announced they’d be making new Star Wars movies, one person many people thought would be perfect to direct was Neill Blomkamp. The director of District 9 and the upcoming Elysium has already exhibited an incredible talent to make high octane sci-fi action with rich characters and complex themes. Just the kind of stuff that made the original Star Wars movies great.

J.J. Abrams, not Blomkamp, is directing Star Wars Episode VII. Before that was official, however, Abrams said he didn’t think he could direct because ”it comes with the burden of being that kind of iconic movie and series.” At Monday’s Elysium press event, also attended by Star Wars Episode VII producer and Star Wars spinoff writer, Simon Kinberg, Blomkamp said something incredibly similar.

When asked if he would ever circle back to the two unique worlds he created in District 9 and Elysium, Blomkamp said he has more to explore in the world of District 9, and that’s easy because it’s a world he built. He doesn’t have to answer to anyone. That lead to a tangent about his failed attempt at making Halo and, eventually, the sentiment that there are other “pieces of cinema history” and “iconic characters” he’d like to make films about, but he gets “an allergic reaction” when he “dips his toes” in. But “maybe one day I’ll end up doing something like that.”  And as he was saying that, Kinberg smirked.

A speculative stretch? Absolutely. But the quote, the context, and more simply scream “Star Wars.” Read the full quotes below. Read More »

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Sony is having a little event today for Neill Blomkamp‘s second film, Elysium. That means we might just have a trailer to show you very soon, and at the very least there will be more talk about footage from the film.

Until we get something more, here’s a new poster for the film. As the other stills have done, this focuses on Matt Damon‘s character, and the augmentations made to his body — augmentations that both preserve his life, and may turn him into something like a weapon. Check out the image in full below. [Update: We've added the official poster release. The trailer hits tomorrow.] Read More »

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