Halo movie director no longer interested in adaptation - Report

District 9 and live-action short director Neil Blomkamp said he "probably wouldn't do Halo if it was offered" due to lingering bitterness over project's unraveling.

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This week's announcement that Spider-Man director Sam Raimi will direct the long-in-gestation Warcraft movie was greeted by near-universal praise. The reaction was quite different, though, in August 2006 when Microsoft announced that a virtual unknown had signed on to direct the big-screen version of Halo.

Though South African filmmaker Neill Blomkamp had the full backing of Halo executive producer Peter Jackson (the Lord of the Rings films), skepticism was rampant elsewhere. The sci-fi shooter series' rabid fans worried that his advertising background might make him susceptible to Hollywood producers' demands. Conversely, the two studios bankrolling the Halo movie with Microsoft, Fox and Universal, were reportedly so concerned by Blomkamp's inexperience and the project's budget that they suspended production indefinitely.

District 9is aiming for a different audience than Halo.
District 9is aiming for a different audience than Halo.

For its part, Microsoft had enough faith in Blomkamp to commission him to direct a series of live-action shorts in the lead-up to Halo 3's launch (viewable below). The gritty segments' reception was largely positive, raising hopes that after the release of his forthcoming film District 9, executive-produced by Jackson, he might return to the mothballed Halo movie.

Now, any such hopes have been all but dashed--by Blomkamp himself. Speaking with cinema blog Slashfilm at Comic-Con 2009 in San Diego, the currently Vancouver-based filmmaker expressed both a love of the Halo universe and an intense bitterness over the multimillion-dollar unraveling.

"I probably wouldn't do [the] Halo [movie] if it was offered to me," he told Slashfilm. "But creatively, I would like to do it. It's kind of like I'd be sad to not work on it, but I would still say no. I worked on it for five months…I put a lot of sort of sweat and blood into Halo. Creatively, it's very compelling. I love it. But, when you work that long on something and you have it bottom out and collapse…I mean, I got District 9 out of it, I think I'm probably better off because it's more of a personal film. But yeah, I love the world of Halo. [But] I don't think I would go back there."

Based on Blomkamp's short "Alive in Joburg," District 9 tells the tale of a group of alien refugees who land outside Johannesburg. Stranded on Earth, they are ghettoized and persecuted by humanity, leading to a deadly showdown. Blomkamp's other works include several short films: the minithriller "Yellow," the Robocop-esque "Tetra Vaal," and the Futurama-meets-The Office-like satire "Tempbot."

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KSU-Wildcat

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These shorts are amazing. The movie NEEDS to be made.

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Hdgmedic

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How dumb does MIcrosoft feel now? Neil got two Oscar nominations for his movie District 9. Wonder how well that Halo movie would have turned out after all?

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starduke

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Dang, those Halo 3 shorts are good. It's really too bad that this Blomkamp dude probably won't be making the movie. He did do a good job on the shorts.

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beekayjay

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Halo is garbage anyways. I`d rather see a Pac Man movie than something regarding this over-rated tripe.

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bad_fur_day

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Why doncha have a cry about it.

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AshTray1986

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Raykuza, Uwe Bolls name wasnt tarnished because of his choice in video games movies. His name was tarnished because he is a pitiful director. His movies failed by default...

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ajebus

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i would love to see a halo movie but if its animated then it would be kool

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thisisjosh

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i'm fine with him trying to be all smooth & not interested, when obviously and realistically Neil would take it back in a heartbeat if it was offered to him again.

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venasque

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I am really looking forward to District 9. I hope it does very well and all the Hollywood doubters come to regret their decision. Hollywood really needs to step outside the box more often, it is as though everyone who lives there lives in a world separated from the rest of us

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Agreb91

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I always felt that making a Halo movie this soon would never work out. I was right.

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omnislash6669

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yeah i think this be one of those movies that ruin a good game's name. not a good idea. but here's hoping! and yes the prince of persia movie is being made and it's actually either quite close to post production or is in post production now. I have already seen two of the movie posters. One is Jake Gyllenhal as the prince, which he actually looks alot like him. Then there is Sir Ben Kingsley as mr baddie. fingers crossed for that one! Off. name: Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time

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games100

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good, halo is a game!

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pimpo909

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I wouldn't doubt that a Halo movie would make a fair amount at the box office. I also wouldn't doubt that it'd be one of the worst movies I'd ever see. And, that YouTube video almost made me sick. I feel it. Seriously.

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SF_KiLLaMaN

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I hope they decide not to do Halo movie, it just looks and sounds stupid...

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E-i-N-e

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That video is pretty damn awesome, they just need to fix up the brutes and add a little more surroundings and they're good!

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R8der8180

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@imaps3fanboy Prince of Persia IS being made into a movie.

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Barighm

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Barighm  Online

Didn't the Prince of Persia movie already start filming? They had links to pics from the set on this website not too long ago. As for Blomkamp...well, if District 9 turns out to be a sci-fi masterpiece, then we will all feel bad. If D9 flops, then we will breath a sigh of relief. Either way, I'm not worried. MS definitely wants a Halo movie. Maybe they were waiting for Blom to finish work on D9, and now that they know he won't do it, they will either try to convince him, bribe him, or just move on. It's not like sci-fi wasn't getting by before Neil came along.

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mayceV

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@imaps3fanboy tjey tried makingg sands of time into a movie but it din't work out just like halo

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mayceV

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awesome in game graphics !!!! lol

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imaps3fanboy

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For some reason I think prince of persia would be a good movie idea.

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mayceV

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NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! I'll sit in the directors chair :( I'd direct it....

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darkxxchris

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when i first saw district 9 it remind it me of halo and now i know why it reminded me

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Sodney

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NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! or......whatever.....

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Raykuza

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Whew, dodged a bullet there. I'm sure Blomkamp is a decent director, but video game movies are practically destined to fail from the very start. And I'm sure he doesn't want his name tarnished in the same way Uwe Boll's is. Besides, Halo's story is meant to be played, not watched which is probably why game movies suck so hard.

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rht992

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you know that short film wasn't too bad. with a bit more funding a good film could have been on the horizon but things weren't meant to be that way. . .

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Beastcake

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Its a shame... i had high-hopes for this guy. Once I saw that he was making District 9, I was like, wow, too bad for Fox/Universal.

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painguy1

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that short was awsome lets hope it was one of the impulisive things people say when they are in a bad mood or something.

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UnamedThing

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District 9/the Halo shorts are SUPER cheesy.

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punkpunker

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may be if District 9 would be a very succesful movie or praised by critics, it could do justice with the movie adaptation

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tonyranger007

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I went to VFS with Blomkamp when he was still fresh from SA. His dedication to his final project (a very Armageddon like short that nearly got him kicked out for not completing all the other crap we had to do) was brilliant. I know District 9 will slam him on the map, and I hope afterwards, he'll at least be willing to be a creative force behind a Halo movie whent he studios finally smarten up and come a' calling.

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mr0806

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that sucks, he is a really good director...

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imarabin

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this is terable no halo movie!

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styymy

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A PG-13 rating would kill this and shouldn't be made to cater to the young ones. Blomkamp's piece I thought was rather gritty however. No campy humor or trying too hard dialog. Just straight to the action. The ships vehicles and Convenent looked good for what the budget was. This was a Live Action Short, not a film. Films and Shorts a two different things. Too many people on here don't understand that.

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shkar

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Man just don't bother doing a movie for HALO...........It's just not right and probably won't b successful like many other game adaptation movies.....

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dark_rage864

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thank god - my eyes are put off the Halo movie now since i have lost interest due waiting for so long period. The only thing that interest me now is prob Halo 3 and the upcoming Halo games and thats it.

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kenbub1

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After seeing the Halo movie clip, I'm so glad they held off on producing this SyFy original wanna be. Dull actors playing Halo on a paint ball field. Aliens with no depth/personality. Cornball opening intro showcasing vehicles, weapons, and soldiers being branded. If they are going to produce crap like this then at least have Jean-Claude Van Damme play master chief. Universal Soldier movie looked better than this mess.

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sun_rider95

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for a small budget is good...imagine what they can do with a bigger one

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jadegogetter

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How can you say the footage above sucks? It was done on a minimal budget and even then he made it 10X better then any 'SCI-FI' TV movie. If I had seen that live action short and had any say in if he directed the movie, he would of had 2 thumbs up. And yes, District 9 looks sweet! No wonder Peter Jackson backs him.

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red-orc

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It's no question, that one day we'll see a Halo-movie and I bet it'll be well done, better than Blomcamp could do now.

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Half-LifeFan

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Uh....is it just me or does the clip above look like something from SyFy's straight to TV movies...doesn't look very promising to begin with...

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deawsomekurt

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The worst thing is when great games get there reputation ruined by crappy movies.

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LithuanianGamer

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Thank God

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angelcar

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Screw halo and the idiots at Fox & Universal for pulling the rug from under Blomkamp. The District 9 footage at Comic-Con looked insane. That movie's gonna rule.

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bboysleepy32

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i think District 9 is going to be awesome, but can't say the same for a Halo movie

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deadcowboy6

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that would have been a damn good movie, its a shame

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FLEEBS

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Sucks. He really probably could have done the series justice.

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Bowser05

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That is truly dissapointing news. I LOVED Landfall and REALLY look forward to District 9. I had high hopes for the Halo movie, but I can totally understand his frustration at the same time. He basically got screwed after so much hard work. Pity nonetheless.

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Sendmn23

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GOOD! I didn't want this guy for the halo movie.... I wanted Peter Jackson to do it... and district 9 in my opinion looks like a bunch of over grown cocroaches ruining peoples lives.... so there! let the thumbs down begin!!! I just want the Halo movie to be done right!

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Zsaber24

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i gotta say that NO ONE could of done a better job on the halo short film. it is a bummer that if i does come out at all it is gonna b a long time.

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CPM_basic

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Pity.... I really loved the short action movie he made. I watched in on youtube so many times... on xbox live a few times as well. It was so gritty and had a very real feel to it. Something most directors probably would of messed up by making it too CGish and not getting the Halo lore right.