Damon, Foster and Blomkamp Talk Upcoming Original Sci-Fi Entry 'Elysium' in New EW (VIDEO)

Interviews
by Beth Hanna
July 25, 2013 12:18 PM
1 Comment
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Cover detail of Entertainment Weekly's July 26, 2013, edition

Director Neill Blomkamp (Oscar-nominated "District 9") and stars Matt Damon and Jodie Foster talk upcoming original sci-fi entry "Elysium" (August 9), in this week's edition of Entertainment Weekly (on newsstands July 26). Blomkamp discusses the pressures of making his first big-budget tentpole, while Damon and Foster describe their first impressions of the director.

The film is set in 2154, and Earth has become a Third World slum. Damon's character, an Earth dweller, is accidentally exposed to lethal radiation at the L.A. factory where he works, and is given five days to live. To save himself and his world's population, he hatches a plan to break into Elysium, the satellite planet created by the rich and powerful, where any ailment can be cured within seconds. Foster's character is the head of Elysium's Civil Cooperation Bureau, while Sharlto Copley ("District 9") plays a henchman assigned to take out Damon's character. (Watch our Comic-Con 2012 coverage here, Blomkamp video interview below; and trailer here.)

Blomkamp on the pressure of making a $100 million tentpole film:

“No one ever said to me, ‘This movie has to make its money back.' But you’d have to be a moron to not understand that. They’re investing in this film the same way they’re investing in, like, real estate... High-level actors can be these razor-sharp tools that help you tell the story. But they can also be all about their close-ups and the size of their trailers. I was very apprehensive. You just hear all these horror stories…”

Foster on Blomkamp:

"You would never even know he’s a director. He walks up to you on set and you think he’s some guy on the crew.” 

Damon on Blomkamp:

“I think he was even reluctant to meet me. He kept saying, ‘I’m not doing anything Hollywood,’ and I was like, ‘Dude, I live in New York.’ We ended up meeting in a diner, and he was kind of giving me the one-eye for the first 10 minutes or so...Neill’s really fun to talk to, but he’s definitely pessimistic. Get him talking about where he thinks the world is going if you want to slit your wrists.”

South African Blomkamp on America:

“America’s like a beacon in the world. But I feel like I’m watching it go down the toilet in front of my eyes. I’m fairly certain that this country is going to have pockets of Third World poverty within 50 to 60 years... I knew that to show L.A., one of the richest cities in the world, as completely broken and dilapidated would mess with the audience. I wanted to show Americans what it feels like to be on the other side of the border.”

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1 Comment

  • Thesaurusrs | July 25, 2013 4:37 PMReply

    He's right about America. The Republican Party has essentially ceased to function, and how does a two party system renew itself when the entrenched wealthy few control all the levers of power? It sickens me to see all the hard work of generations thrown away. We will have to answer to history for our poor stewardship. What is one person to do?

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