One of sci-fi's most acclaimed young directors might not ever step into the superhero machine, for a very simple reason.
Neill Blomkamp's debut feature film, 2009's District 9, was one of the most acclaimed sci-fi films in recent memory, and earned not only a Best Picture nomination at the Oscars, but also a Best Adapted Screenplay nod for Blomkamp, who was barely 30 years old at the time. Now Blomkamp (shown above on the Elysium set with Matt Damon) is back with Elysium, another ambitious sci-fi epic. It seems he's here to stay as one of the genre's heavy hitters, but would he ever consider stepping outside of his own creations and into the collaboration-heavy world of, say, Marvel Studios, or perhaps the Walt Disney Company's revival of Star Wars?
"This is my thought process. My thought process is, it’s exactly what I was just saying, I just want to be an artist that’s just left alone," Blomkamp said in a new interview with Collider. "That’s really what I want. I want to make stuff that just…films are the only art form that require commerce so desperately. Any other artist needs a few dollars for a paint brush, really if you think about it, like musicians or authors. They can be as free as they want. This is the one thing that just needs copious amounts of money. If you imagine a filmmaker trying to just be left alone as much as possible and make Star Wars how does that work? Exactly, it kind of doesn’t, but…"
But does that mean he'd never step into such a big tentpole operation? After all, this is the guy who almost made a Halo movie a few years back. Is that still something that's on his mind?
"I cannot imagine the s--t that would’ve gone down if that production had actually been made," Blomkamp said of the Halo film. "But Peter (Jackson) may have been able to shield me from it…possibly. The world of Halo and the mythology of Halo, though is still something that I find- it’s like Star Wars, it’s so appealing to me because it’s cool and it’s there and I can imagine it. But you have to do it in a way you can do it yourself."
Knowing what we know about how movie studios deal with such gigantic properties, it might seem that Blomkamp would never get the creative freedom he'd like if he stepped into the Disney machine. You never know, though. Maybe Kevin Feige has a place at the Marvel Studios table for him.
What do you think? Will Blomkamp ever stray into franchise filmmaking, or is he just too independent-minded?
Elysium hits theaters Friday.