This summer's sci-fi spectacle "Elysium" was wildly anticipated, and rightfully so: it was the sophomore feature by Neill Blomkamp, the young visionary behind alien-infested apartheid allegory "District 9." And while "Elysium" didn't quite live up to the astronomical anticipation, it did cement Blomkamp as a fearless genre filmmaker, one willing to try just about anything in the service of his far-out fantasies. His next feature is "Chappie," a dark robot comedy about an android cop kidnapped by ruthless thugs. Sounds pretty wild, right? Well, as if you needed another reason to get pumped, Hugh Jackman has now joined the cast.
Jackman will play the rival of Dev Patel's character. Sharlto Copley, Blomkamp's BFF who made an international splash in "District 9," before playing a ruthless bounty hunter weirdo in "Elysium," will be providing the motion capture performance for the robot. And Die Antwoord (nee Yo-Landi Visser and Ninja), the South African rap duo known for their outrageous music, performances, and videos, will portray the gangsters.
Jackman is coming off a super strong 2013, in which he started off the year with his very first Academy Award nomination for Best Actor (for "Les Miserables") and continued with two wonderful performances in James Mangold's superhero saga "Wolverine" (weirdly underrated, considering it's a giant studio contraption) and, currently, in "Prisoners," an essential thriller in which Jackman plays a father tortured by the disappearance of his young daughter. It's a performance that's so good that it could signal Oscar nomination number two.
Not much else is known about the film, although Blomkamp had previously described it as being like a really funny version of "RoboCop," apparently missing the memo that "RoboCop" is already really funny. "Chappie" is expected to be released in 2015, alongside every other movie ever.