Earlier this morning, the 2010 Oscar Nominations were finally unveiled, and one curious inclusion was District 9. Not only did it receive nods for best visual effects (hardly a shocker there, obviously), editing, and adapted screenplay, but best picture as well! But here’s the funny thing; it totally could have been The Halo movie up there, rubbing shoulders with Inglourious Basterds & Precious.
A few people know this already, but for the rest of you, via District 9’s wikipedia page:
“Producer Peter Jackson planned to produce a film adaptation based on the Halo video game franchise with first-time director Neill Blomkamp. Due to lack of financing, the Halo adaptation was placed on hold. Jackson and Blomkamp discussed pursuing alternative projects and eventually chose to produce and direct, respectively, District 9.”
And via Halo’s:
“The movie was to be developed and released by 20th Century Fox, under the creative oversight of Microsoft… Before Blomkamp signed on, Guillermo del Toro was in negotiations to direct.
The crew stopped and resumed preproduction of the film several times. Blomkamp declared the project dead in late 2007, but Jackson replied that the film would still be made. Blomkamp and Jackson collaborated on District 9, but the director [later said in an interview] that he was no longer considering working on a Halo film if the opportunity arose, saying that after working on the film for five months before the project’s collapse it would be difficult to return. The rights for the film have since reverted back to Microsoft.”
The development history for the Halo flick has been messy to say the least, and in a small way, this is the bittersweet cheery on top for all parties involved, especially MS. Not saying that the Halo film, as it would have been created, would have gotten a nod as well, though several reports that state quite a few elements from that was carried over to District 9. I guess the worst part was how MS (regardless of how valid its reasons might have been for pulling the plug) had a genuinely bright and shining star from the world of filmmaking set to helm the reigns, and it could have easily been the greatest video game to big screen adaptation of all time. Oh well.