Neill Blomkamp Thinks Failed HALO Movie Was A Stroke Of Luck
While discussing his latest film, Elysium, director Neill Blomkamp looks back at the planned adaptation of Microsoft's first-person shooter, Halo that fizzled out back in 2006.
Back in 2005, Neil Blomkamp was just a young, up-and-coming director from the world of commercials and music videos who was handpicked by Peter Jackson (The Hobbit) to helm a live-action film adaptation of Microsoft’s hit first-person shooter video game, Halo. A year later, the project fell apart due to Jackson and Microsoft’s onerous contract stipulations, something partners 20th Century Fox and Universal Pictures decided was too big of a financial risk to their respective companies. Spurred by a guilty conscious so to speak, Jackson agreed to produce and help finance Blomkamp’s original, small-budget sci-fi project named District 9.
Blomkamp considers the failure of Halo to be the greatest stroke of luck in his filmmaking career. Said Blomkamp, “The luck is the fact that Peter and Fran [Walsh] let me make [‘District 9’] out of the ruins that were ‘Halo’. What happened out of that was learning to trust my ideas. If ‘Halo’ had come out and succeeded or failed, I wouldn’t have learned that.” His experience on the Halo movie is something that Blomkamp doesn’t necessarily want to forget, it's merely something he doesn’t want to experience again. Hence, his response in prior interviews that he would not want to direct a Star Wars or Star Trek film. ”There are many franchises out there I would love to participate in,” said the young director. ”The problem is when you agree to do that, you take a lot of the control that you have over your own creative destiny away from yourself.”
As far as a live-action Halo adaptation is concerned, recently, esteemed film director Steven Spielberg expressed interested in helming or producing a Halo movie, which led to his involvement with Microsoft’s plans for a television series centered around their best-selling first-person shooter. While the Halo movie appears to have stalled, the tv series is reportedly set to be Microsoft’s flagship series for their slate of original programming launching with the XBox One.
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