What do you get when you combine a gritty allegory about a viciously oppressive South African class system and an uplifting but frequently jarring epic about a viciously oppressive Indian class system? Comedy, that’s what. Neill Blomkamp, the visionary director who brought us District 9 (the first movie in our introductory joke) and helms the upcoming Orwellian jaunt Elysium is working on a science fiction comedy titled Chappie, a project that he has been developing as an adaptation of his own short film Tetra Vaal (which you can watch below). According to The Hollywood Reporter, Dev Patel, star of Slumdog Millionaire (the second movie in our introductory joke) and The Newsroom is in talks to star in the feature.
Despite the dire nature of each party’s most famous work, it’s not as though Patel and Blomkamp are entirely inexperienced in the laughs department. The Newsroom is kind of a comedy, right? And lest we forget the sordid wit of the British series Skins, Patel’s screen debut. As for Blomkamp, he’s dabbled in humorous writing with the short Wikuz and Charlize, which actually lives on Funny or Die.
So maybe the guy who made us shudder when he infected an ignorant government agent with a life-destroying virus and the guy who made us cry when he braved adversity and torture to reunite with his one true love are actually a pretty appropriate team to make a science fiction comedy. And even if we still can’t get past these connotations, there’ll be robots. So, hang your hat on that.