Despite the fact that he only has one feature film under his belt, Neill Blomkamp continues to be one of the more promising and refreshing filmmakers working today. After the success of his Best Picture-nominated 2009 sci-fi film District 9, Blomkamp was likely inundated with offers to direct pretty much any studio tentpole of his choosing. Instead, the director opted to stick with original filmmaking, and the result is the great-looking sci-fi/social commentary pic Elysium, which opens in theaters next month.
Nevertheless, fan interest in a sequel to District 9 remains, and during a recent interview Blomkamp revealed that he’s actually made some progress on the proposed District 10. Moreover, he apparently turned down the opportunity to helm a new Star Wars film in order to once again focus on original projects. Hit the jump for more.
Embedded in an excellent profile of Blomkamp by the folks at Wired are some fascinating nuggets that The Playlist has highlighted. First and foremost, Blomkamp has made considerable progress on District 10. Whether it ever sees the light of day, though, is uncertain:
He and [wife/partner Terri] Tatchell have written an 18-page treatment for District 10—about which he’ll say little more than that the story is “really fucking cool”—but he’s not prepared to commit to it. He’s sure he’ll come up with any number of other really fucking cool ideas he might want to pursue first.
Though District 10 may or may not come to fruition sooner or later, it certainly won’t be Blomkamp’s next film. He’s currently gearing up to shoot his Elysium follow-up, the secretive Chappie, this fall with a cast that includes Sharlto Copley, Dev Patel, and Die Antwoord’s Ninja and Yolandi Visser, and he teased a bit about the project in the Wired profile:
Chappie, Blomkamp says, is about sentience: “If something is as smart as you, do you treat it differently if it isn’t a human?” He’s cowriting Chappie with Tatchell, who describes the script as laugh-out-loud funny but also emotional. “It’s fairly touching,” Blomkamp confirms. “But, you know, fraught with gunfire.”
Finally, we know that Lucasfilm and Disney are not only planning the direct Star Wars sequel Episode VII, but also a series of spinoff films set in the same universe. It appears that Blomkamp was approached to direct one of the new Star Wars films, but he politely declined:
He turned down the possibility of working on a new Star Wars movie after the subject was “gingerly” broached by Elysium producer and close friend Simon Kinberg, who’s deeply involved in the revitalized franchise.
Check out the full Wired profile for more from Blomkamp. Elysium opens on August 9th.