District 9: From the Ashes of the Halo Movie
The fine gentlemen over at Giant Bomb have posted the new trailer for Neill Blomkamp’s District 9. If the name, Neill Blomkamp, sounds a bit familiar, it’s probably due to the fact that for a short (note: very very short) time, his name was attached to both Peter Jackson and the now scrapped Halo movie. Although that small film went by the wayside, new pal Peter Jackson was determined to make “something” with Blomkamp at the helm (I would have to assume some of the allocated money from the Halo film wound up in this film). So he decided to take Blomkamp’s 6 minute short, Alive in Joburg, which has been making the rounds since his name was first mentioned, and turn it into a feature film.
I’m going to stop and let you readers take a look at the short film and the new trailer. Please continue to read after the gap.
Right, so we’re all on the same page now? Good. My first thought: great for Blomkamp. He’s gone from short film to feature film director faster than most people are able to hail a New York City taxi. The bad news: does anyone actually care? I mean, besides me. Sure, I was impressed by the original short, so I’m the demo most likely to see District 9. But does anyone expect this movie to make any money? And worse, does anyone expect this movie to be on more than, say, a handful of theaters in only the most populace of cities on release day?
Don’t get me wrong: I would love to see this film do well. I think Blomkamp is a really talented guy. But the style and special effects in District 9 (from the little we see in the trailer) isn’t that far removed from that of Joburg (and Joburg, I’m sure, cost a ‘flock’-ton less). Plus, I’m not convinced this is the movie that will make Blomkamp a film superstar. It just looks too ‘indie’ (in the wrong way) to be taken seriously, or to solidify Blomkamp as the director of an eventual Halo film, if the project were ever started up again.
It’s unlikely we’ll ever see what Blomkamp would have done at the helm of a Halo film. But we can always look at the few glimpses we were privy to in the viral ads for Halo 3. As for District 9, I guess I’ll just have to reserve judgment on the film that was made until it’s released (for better or for worse).
District 9 is currently set for release on August 14th, 2009.