First Look at Sharlto Copley in Neill Blomkamp's 'Elysium'

Monday, 24 December 2012 14:11 Written by  Jordan DeSaulnier
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First Look at Sharlto Copley in Neill Blomkamp's 'Elysium'

After demonstrating that he could be a socially conscious, less sex-focused Paul Verhoeven with 2009's violent, darkly funny sci-fi allegory District 9, Neill Blomkamp is returning with Elysium, another science fiction take on current social and economic ills. 

He's bringing his District 9 star Sharlto Copley, and on this holiday eve, we have a first look at Copley in character.

Elysium takes place in a future where the vast gulf between the poor and rich has grown so large that the two classes are separated by an atmosphere.  The rich live on an idyllic space station known as Elysium, while the vast majority of humanity live on the overpopulated, hellish surface of Earth.  Matt Damon stars as a man who, thanks to a threat to his life, is absolutely determined to get from Earth to Elysium.

Copley, who starred as the hapless Wikus van der Merwe in Blomkamp's feature debut, plays a bounty named Kruger.  This unsavory looking character is contracted to ensure that Damon's character does not make it to Elysium.  Though he's not going through a brutal transformation into an alien here, Copley does look plenty weathered, and has some rather uncomfortable bits of hardware protruding from his grizzled face.  And you can tell he's a mercenary to be feared based on the weaponry and ammo on his chest.

The image premiered over at Empire, where Copley explained, "I combined references from a very infamous South African military battalion called 32 Battalion, that fought in the Border Wars in South Africa, and a stereotype of character that you get in the south of Johannesburg, where the guys are a little bit more comfortable with violence!"

With Damon as the hero and Copley as the villain, Elysium also stars Jodie Foster, Diego Luna, William Fichtner, Wagner Moura, Alice Braga, Faran Tahir, and Talisa Soto.

Originally scheduled for the spring of 2013, the film was recently shifted to an August 9, 2013 release date.  Hopefully we'll be seeing a poster and teaser trailer in the near future.

In the meantime, here's the official synopsis:

In the year 2159 two classes of people exist: the very wealthy who live on a pristine man-made space station called Elysium, and the rest, who live on an overpopulated, ruined Earth. Secretary Rhodes (Jodie Foster), a hard line government official, will stop at nothing to enforce anti-immigration laws and preserve the luxurious lifestyle of the citizens of Elysium. That doesn’t stop the people of Earth from trying to get in, by any means they can. When unlucky Max (Matt Damon) is backed into a corner, he agrees to take on a daunting mission that if successful will not only save his life, but could bring equality to these polarized worlds.

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