It's far too rare that the genre is recognized by the designers branch
I'm pretty well stoked for Neill Blomkamp's "Elysium," which looks to put a bow on the summer spectacle season next month. And with Comic-Con around the corner, I'm reminded of that first screening of "District 9" four years ago and how much of a knock-out the experience was. I'm still shocked it managed to navigate the season and end up with Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay nominations. It's such an anomaly to me for that, even in an expanded Best Picture scenario.
Will "Elysium" be so fortunate? Time will tell. Starring Matt Damon and Jodie Foster, it certainly has more A-list talent on board to get AMPAS members to take notice. Or it could just be another fantastic entry in sci-fi cinema, which has of late become mired in the same high-gloss franchise-mongering that manages to ruin just about everything. And that would be fine, too.
Over at Wired, Mark Yarm has cranked out a wonderful profile of Blomkamp in advance of the film's release. It's a thorough consideration of the young filmmaker, tracing his relationship with actor Sharlto Copley, his eventual partnership with Peter Jackson and the failed "Halo" project, the complete opposite mentality that went into "District 9" and "Elysium"'s likely place in a socio-political conversation. What caught my eye, though, was the involvement of futurist designer Syd Mead in the project. Sue me, I wasn't aware.