Elysium, the upcoming film from District 9 director Neill Blomkamp, is continuing to gain heat. After casting Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, and Sharlto Copley, the film is currently being pitched to various studios (with the exception of Disney, which won’t make expensive R-rated movies). Deadline reports that Blomkamp is going from studio to studio with a storyboard presentation. Also, while we knew the story (which is still being kept under wraps) would take place in the distant future and on another plantet, Deadline is reporting that the film takes place 100 years into the future, is “an unabashedly big movie”, and has the same social allegory of District 9.
Hit the jump for more details on Elysium including the hiring of Blade Runner production designer Syd Mead.
[Update: Sony has reportedly picked up the film for $120 million. Details below.]
Syd Mead, whose credits include not only Blade Runner but also Aliens and TRON, will design the sets for the movie. Mead doesn’t work on a lot of films these days (his only credits in the past decade are Mission to Mars and Mission: Impossible III) , but he was impressed by District 9 and that encouraged him to join Blomkamp’s follow-up.
According to Deadline, the film will begin prep in April and start shooting in Vancouver this July before moving on to shoot in Mexico City in the fall. Elysium is being set up for release in holiday 2012, but the release date decision ultimately falls to whichever studio decides to pick up the project. Considering the talent already on board, I imagine we’ll be announcing a home for Elysium in the very near future.
[Update: Matt was right on target with that closing line. Heat Vision reports Sony Pictures has preemptively picked up Elysium for an astounding $120 million, though insiders at the studio deny the number. But if you had any doubt that Blomkamp would receive some serious funds to play with…]