A comment left by my fellow blogger the Sci-Fi Fanatic left me wondering:
Are the similarities of Elysium and Oblivion purely coincidental?
Elysium is an original idea written and directed by Neill Blomkamp, the co-writer and director of District 9 (2009). The film stars Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, Sharlto Copley, Wagner Moura, Carly Pope and Alice Braga. It is scheduled to be released on August 9, 2013. Elysium takes place on a ravaged Earth and a space habitat named Elysium.
Oblivion is a science fiction film based on the Radical Comics graphic novel Oblivion created by Joseph Kosinski, but written by Arvid Nelson and illustrated by Andree Wallin. Oblivion will be directed by Kosinski, who co-wrote the screenplay with Karl Gajdusek and Michael Arndt. Interestingly enough, the graphic novel has not yet been released despite a release date of July 19 2011. As far as I know, Radical Comics has not published anything in over a year! It stars Tom Cruise, Olga Kurylenko, Andrea Riseborough, Morgan Freeman, Melissa Leo, Zoë Bell, and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau. The film was initially scheduled to release on July 10, 2013. Since the 3D re-release of Jurassic Park was set for a July 19, 2013 release date, the project was moved forward to April 19, 2013.
Elysium’s plot description:
In the year 2159, two classes of people exist. The first are the very wealthy who live on Elysium, a pristine man-made space station similar in appearance to a Stanford torus built by the Armadyne Corporation. The rest live on an overpopulated, ruined Earth. Secretary Rhodes (Jodie Foster), a hard-nosed government ofﬁcial, will stop at nothing to enforce anti-immigration laws and preserve the luxurious lifestyle of the citizens of Elysium. That does not stop the people of Earth from trying to get in, by any means they can. When unlucky ex-con 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.
Oblivion’s plot description:
Jack Harper (Tom Cruise) is one of the last few drone repairmen stationed on Earth. Part of a massive operation to extract vital resources after decades of war with a terrifying threat known as the Scavs, Jack’s mission is nearly complete. Living in and patrolling the skies from thousands of feet above, his soaring existence is brought crashing down when he rescues an attractive female stranger from a downed spacecraft. Her arrival triggers a chain of events that forces him to question everything.
While the environments of both films look similar, the plots of the films seem dissimilar. Interesting as well is the film After Earth (originally known as 1000 A.E.) an upcoming American science-fiction thriller film directed by M. Night Shyamalan, starring real-life father and son Will and Jaden Smith as Cypher and Kitai Raige, also dealing with a devistade future Earth. I didn’t add this to my list of films that I’m looking forward to because I think M. Night Shyamalan is a terrible filmmaker.
My opinion is that the best film will be Elysium (August 9), based on Neill Blomkamp’s previous film District 9. However, both Oblivion (April 19) and After Earth (June 7) are being released before Elysium and I am concerned it may hurt its chances. What do you think?