Neill Blomkamp’s ‘Chappie’ Moving Forward With Die Antwoord And Sharlto Copley To Star

District 9 director Neill Blomkamp’s sophomore outing, Elysium, was #1 at the box office last weekend. This may be why Sony and MRC have moved forward with funding for Blomkamp’s next film, Chappie. The sci-fi comedy takes place in South Africa and is based on the director’s short film “Tetra Vaal” (video below).

Last time we wrote about Chappie, Die Antwoord member Ninja was saying he and Yolandi Vi$$er would be starring as themselves in the film. Even earlier, Vi$$er sung, “Neill Blomkamp’s making me a movie star” in the NSFW video for “Babys On Fire”, which also included this awesome in-joke:

As unusual as that casting rumor seemed, Sony has now confirmed it with an official press release (via Screenrant) which gives us our first synopsis for Chappie.

Chappie tells the story of a robot imbued with artificial intelligence who is stolen by two local gangsters who want to use him for their own nefarious purposes. The film will star Sharlto Copley as the voice of Chappie, with Ninja and Yolandi Visser, voices of the South African Zef counter-culture movement and members of rap-rave duo Die Antwoord, as the two gangsters.

Sharlto Copley as a robot kidnapped by Die Antwoord? Can we bottle this and pour it all over me?

Chappie is set to start filming this fall with a budget rumored to be $50 million (compared to District 9‘s $30 million budget). Blomkamp’s wife, District 9 co-writer Terri Tatchell, will be working with him on the script. Hopefully she’ll inject some of the quirky humor Elysium lacked in her absence.

Here’s the short film that set it off.

Banner image by via Creative Commons license.