Jodie Foster, Neill Blomkamp, Matt Damon, Sharlto Copley and producer Simon Kinberg gave a press conference for Blomkamp's Elysium, the highly secretive follow-up to his District 9. Blomkamp's a visionary director whose District 9 pushed a modest budget into a visually staggering film. Elysium will certainly be a special effects riot, but we're not going to see those effects in 3D at 48fps.
He acknowledged that it could take some getting used to and that in the future, it might be the norm, but that's not his preference. "If you were to show a child who's six months now a 48fps movie, when they're sixty, it'll be as familiar to them as 24fps are for us now. But there may be an alien quality from 48fps; it has kind of a hyper-realism that takes away the cinema of it. I don't actually like 48fps. I prefer 24fps. I definitely prefer 2D to 3D."
This is interesting because Blomkamp was actually discovered by 48fps champion Peter Jackson, who produced District 9. Maybe Blomkamp just hasn't had Sir Ian McKellen thunder at him about 3D yet.
A couple of other tidbits from the press conference: the film takes place in 2159, and the wealthiest of the population live on a man-made, orbital space system. Blomkamp said at the press conference, "The Earth is diseased and has been left behind. The film definitely has elements of the haves and the have nots, the discrepancy of wealth and the widening gap. But hopefully it's a form that is woven into the tapestry of the film in a way that feels organic to the science fiction." Also both Jodie Foster and Matt Damon put Blomkamp at the top of their dream director lists after seeing District 9. Foster said she'd been hoping to work with him and "I read the script for Elysium and lo and behold! There's a role for a woman. I said, 'Works for me!'" Damon said after meeting Blomkamp to discuss Elysium, "He gave me this graphic novel and a whole bunch of works on weapon systems. I went home and told my wife, 'There's no way I'm gonna let this get away. I have to do it.' And we planned our whole life around it."
Blomkamp also talked a little about his next film, a science fiction comedy called Chappie. "I was writing Elysium and I had this idea for this film, so I wrote it with Terri [Tatchell] who wrote District 9 with me, and after three weeks, it was done. It was simultaneous; I would write Elysium on my own and write this film with her. It's much more simplistic than Elysium in terms of concept...District 9 and Elysium and Chappie were all some sort of visual concept first. For District 9 it was aliens in Johannesburg, for Elysium it was this space station separate from the earth. For Chappie, the imagery is of this ridiculous robot character, much more comedy based in an unusual set. I'm a visual person first and foremost."
I'm dying to see Elysium - and hell, I'm already excited about Chappie. What about you guys?