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Sharlto Copley, District 9

Ostensibly a New Zealand import, District 9, the audacious science-fiction drama starring Sharlto Copley, marks an innovative and fun new entry into the Earth-invaders genre. The action is set below an alien spaceship that has
settled for 20 years in the skies above South Africa’s Johannesburg,
where the film was shot. The aliens, who resemble upright ants
with more expressive faces, were rendered by a Canadian special
effects company since the Johannesburg-raised Blomkamp lives in
Vancouver. The New Zealand imprimatur comes via the nation’s most
famous local son, Peter Jackson, who produced District 9.
Copley, a well-known South African
producer who grew up with Neill Blomkamp, the film's director, makes his acting debut as the well-meaning but unlucky
bureaucrat who oversees a mandated alien relocation program and finds
his life unalterably changed. Copley talks about his switch from
behind the cameras to in front, his unusual first name and the
metaphorical implications of one of the year's most agreeable
surprises (17 minutes).


Beyond the Subtitles


Stephen Schaefer hosts candid conversations with actors, filmmakers, producers and movie people near and far. Schaefer has over three decades of writing and talking about movies behind him. He is the author of the Hollywood spoof The Autobiography of Marla Del Marr as told to Stephen Schaefer  and is currently a film critic and entertainment writer for The Boston Herald; and a contributor to USA Today and Entertainment Weekly.