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Neill Blomkamp (born 17.9.1979)
Neill Blomkamp is a South African writer; producer and director acknowledged for his visual effect work and documentary style, handheld filmmaking. He is best known for his work on the Academy Award nominated District 9 and was named by Time as one of 2009's most inspirational figures.
Childhood: Blomkamp was born in Johannesburg, South Africa and attended Redhill High school. When Blomkamp was 16 he met Sharlto Copley (District 9, Elysium) who provided Blomkamp with the equipment and resources to allow him to pursue his passion and talent in 3D animation and design. In return, Blomkamp helped to create 3D work and visuals for Copley's marketing and pitches through various projects.
Industry Career: When Blomkamp was 18 he applied and enrolled to Vancouver film school. Blomkamp was hired for multiple 'photo-realistic' effects projects including aviation work with: Popular Science. Blomkamp worked on behalf of The Embassy Visual Effects and Rainmaker digital effects whilst being signed to Spy Films Blomkamp's talent and passion for visual effect lead to him working on television series such as Stargate SG-1, First Wave, Mercy Point, Aftershock: Earthquake in New York, Dark Angel, 3000 Miles to Graceland and critical acclaimed Smallville. Blomkamp was hired for promotion purposes by Adidas for which he wrote, directed and created the visual effects for short film Adicolor Yellow. This led to Blomkamp directing his own short, Alive in Joburg which obtained him with recognition from Academy Award winning director Peter Jackson. Jackson's aimed to produce the Halo movie (for which Blomkamp had previously created three short promotional videos, based in the same universe) with Blomkamp directing. When funding failed Peter Jackson went on to produce an adaptation of Blomkamp's short, Alive in Joburg which ultimately became District 9. District 9 starred old friend of Blomkamp' Sharlto Copley and received critical and public success. The film maintained Blomkamp's documentary style filming, exploring discrimination which is seen throughout his short films.
The BAFTA nominee stars as robot engineer Deon in 'Chappie'.
Dev Patel stars in one of the most unusual sci-fi movies of recent years, 'Chappie', in which he plays a celebrated engineer and inventor of a robotic police force. However, communicating with a robot as opposed to another actor was always going to bring its challenges.
Dev Patel stars alongside Sharlto Copley in 'Chappie'
He's probably best known for starring in the Oscar winning Eastern drama 'Slumdog Millionaire', but Dev Patel is no stranger to the sci-fi fantasy genre. In 2010, he appeared in M. Night Shyamalan's 'The Last Airbender', but rather than having to weave around various special effects, this time he was expected to enact scenes with an inanimate object.
Neill Blomkamp maintains his trademark style of tying a thought-provoking plot to an explosive piece of entertainment with 'Chappie'.
As he did with 'District 9' and 'Elysium', South African filmmaker Neill Blomkamp wants to combine thrills and thoughtful issues in his new movie 'Chappie'. His goal, he says, is to "change the lens through which a person looks at something. But you have to do that without violating the reason that someone paid for a ticket in the first place."
Chappie is played by Sharlto Copley - a longtime collaborator of Blomkamp's
In other words, while all three films include strong political statements, "they're also pieces of entertainment, and if they don't work on that level then they don't work period," he said. "Filmmakers need to remember that audiences go to the cinema to escape for two hours, not to be lectured to. If you really have a message you need to get across, you're better off making a documentary."
Continue reading: Neill Blomkamp's 'Chappie' Mixes Ideas And Action
Neill Blomkamp hasn't quite hit the mark with 'Chappie'.
It seems as though Neill Blomkamp's intention to direct a new Alien movie has taken most of the publicity away from his latest film Chappie, which may be just as well given the middling reviews for the sci-fi movie about a near future mechanized police force.
Chappie has received middling reviews for Neill Blomkamp
'Chappie' is a police droid who is stolen and given new programming to become the first robot with the ability to think and feel for himself. When a powerful and destructive force starts to regard the droid as a danger to mankind, they attempt to ensure that Chappie is the last of his kind.
Continue reading: Is 'Chappie' A Blip On Neill Blomkamp's Previous Unblemished Record?
This is a terrific small film about artificial intelligence wrapped within a much bigger, less involving action blockbuster. When he's grappling with issues of existence and consciousness, filmmaker Neill Blomkamp has a lot of fascinating things to say. But he also seems unable to resist tipping everything into contrived chaos, adding an unconvincing villain and lots of violent gun battles. It's an awkward mix that might please action movie fans more than those who like to engage their brains.
It's set after 2016, when the Johannesburg police deployed a team of Scout robots to bring order to the gang-ruled streets. This has been a bonanza for the tech company Tetravaal, run by hard-nosed CEO Michelle (Sigourney Weaver), who chose the Scout model, designed by the nerdy Deon (Dev Patel), over a more military-style behemoth called Moose, designed by trigger-happy Vincent (Hugh Jackman). Meanwhile, a low-life trio of offbeat, high-energy thugs (Ninja, Yo-Landi Visser and Jose Pablo Cantillo) decide to crack into the Scout's control system, so they kidnap Deon, inadvertently getting their hands on his newest prototype, the first truly sentient robot. When he's switched on, Chappie (Copley) has a sensitive soul and learns rather too quickly from his captors.
With films like District 9 and Elysium, Blomkamp showed an ability to seamlessly integrate technology with a rough and real story, and the effects work here is remarkable mainly because we never see how they're done. The robots look utterly natural mixing with humans, and Copley's performance is so astonishing that Chappie quickly becomes a hugely sympathetic character, uncannily taking on the traits of the people around him. It also helps that the film's script continually puts Chappie into situations that force us to feel his emotions and, most importantly, his powerful sense of self-preservation. Yes, he wants to live!
Continue reading: Chappie Review
Neill Blomkamp will direct the next film in the 'Alien' franchise, 20th Century Fox announced on Wednesday (18th February).
A new film in the Alien franchise has been announced. The upcoming project, produced by the original Alien director Ridley Scott, will be directed by Neill Blomkamp. Blomkamp is best known for directing District 9 and will work on the upcoming Alien project independently from Scott's other Alien franchise film, a sequel to Prometheus.
Neill Blomkamp will direct the upcoming Alien film.
Continue reading: Neill Blomkamp To Direct New 'Alien' Movie, Produced By Ridley Scott
Neill Blomkamp could make an Alien movie at Sony.
Neill Blomkamp, the celebrated director of District 9, says Sony is ready to make his 'Alien' movie that would seemingly feature Sigourney Weaver's character Ellen Ripley and Michael Biehn's Hicks.
Neill Blomkamp says Sony wants to make his Alien movie
At the start of the year, Blomkamp posted concept images of the movie on Instagram though offered little explanation as to their meaning.
Continue reading: Neill Blomkamp Could Make New 'Alien' Movie At Sony
Mankind has the potential to build wondrous things, yet it also truly fears what it doesn't understand. After working for the best part of a year on creating a thinking, feeling artificial intelligence, Deon Wilson (Dev Patel) is close to realising that vision. Said vision is CHAPPiE (Sharlto Copley), and when he is finally activated, he serves as a true breakthrough for mankind. CHAPPiE is a capable of thinking and learning, yet he also has the potential for creating destruction. It is this potential that worries Vincent Moore (Hugh Jackman), who sets out with the intent to destroy CHAPPiE before he can cause any damage.
Continue: Chappie - Trailer
Rich Cline talks us through some of the best films to look out for in 2015.
As always, there are far too many sequels, spin-offs, remakes and reboots clogging the cinemas, but some of them might actually be good. Of course, release dates are subject to change...
10) Shaun The Sheep Movie - The British TV hit becomes a charming stop-motion feature (Feb). Other anticipated animations: Pixar's Inside Out (Jul), Despicable Me spin-off The Minions Movie (Jun) and Snoopy & Charlie Brown (Dec). Watch the trailer for Shaun The Sheep Movie here.
Continue reading: Contactmusic.com’s 10 Most Anticipated Films Of 2015
As he did with District 9, South African filmmaker Blomkamp grounds this sci-fi thriller in present-day society, telling a story that resonates with a strong political kick. He also again uses effects in a off-handed way that never steals focus from the actors. On the other hand,he fails to build much of an emotional impact, even though the script continually tries to ramp up the personal drama. But the actors are all very watchable, and the film's urgent vibe keeps us gripped.
It's set in 2154 Los Angeles, a sprawling shantytown where people struggle to survive without adequate resources or health care. In orbit above the earth, Elysium is an idyllic refuge for the very wealthy. Protected by the fierce Secretary Rhodes (Foster), Elysium's only threat is illegal immigration from the surface. And that's what factory worker Max (Damon) wants to attempt after severe radiation poisoning. Even having a nurse (Braga) for a friend doesn't help him get proper care: he needs the high tech medicine on Elysium to survive. He turns to black-marketeer Spider (Moura) for help, and Spider fits Max with a devise that gives him physical strength plus technology to steal vital information from an Elysium contractor (Fichtner). So Rhodes unleashes sleeper agent Kruger (Copley) to stop Max.
Yes, the plot is somewhat convoluted, but the chaos makes it feel much more realistic than the more simplistic thrillers we usually see. It also helps that the digital effects feel so seamlessly integrated into the shaky-cam mayhem of the favelas, while even the more grandly photographed Elysium leaves the effects in the background. This allows Blomkamp to keep the focus on the characters, even if the splintering plot never draws us in emotionally. Braga's plotline is clearly designed to tug at the heart-strings, but her tentative romance with Max never goes anywhere. Max's friendship with Julio (Luna) is much more interesting.
Continue reading: Elysium Review
Chappie will follow a Robocop-like story.
Neill Blomkamp is already working on his next sci-fi epic, Chappie. Elysium isn’t out until August 21st worldwide, but Blomkamp isn’t wasting any time, especially considering his latest film, starring Matt Damon, was met with luke warm reviews.
Sharlto Copley, Neill Blomkamp and Matt Damon at the Elysium photocall
Chappie will see Blomkamp reunite with Sony Pictures Entertainment and MRC, which means the team behind the burgeoning director’s breakthrough movie, District 9, are back in action. Sharlto Copley, Dev Patel and South African rap duo Ninja and Yolandi Visser will star.
Continue reading: Neill Blomkamp Wastes No Time - After 'Elysium' Comes 'Chappie'
Date of birth
17th September, 1979
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