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Vancouver team’s District 9 tops box-office

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Congrats to the Vancouver Film School where filmmaker Neill Blomkamp, his co-writer Terri Tatchell, Visual Effects Executive Producer Shawn Walsh, and 40 other members of District 9’s visual effects team were all trained …

District9-IntelligentSciFiDistrict 9, a gritty, low-budget space alien movie set in South Africa with a cast of unknowns, opened as Hollywood’s No. 1 film, grossing more at the box-office its first weekend than it cost to make.

The sci-fi action thriller depicting extra-terrestrials as unwanted immigrants stranded in Johannesburg took in $37 million in North America, distributor Sony Pictures said on last Sunday.

It said District 9 cost less than $30 million to make, a modest budget by Hollywood standards.

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VFS alumni join forces on District 9

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by Kyle Rupprecht | Published August 13, 2009

This week, Vancouver Film School (VFS), Canada’s premier entertainment arts institution, is celebrating the release of District 9. The highly anticipated sci-fi thriller, produced by Peter Jackson, is directed/co-written by VFS graduate Neill Blomkamp, making his feature debut. The entire VFS community congratulates Blomkamp—and the 24 VFS Animation & Visual Effects alumni who worked on the film—for their impressive, exciting achievement.

District 9 depicts a settlement of extraterrestrial refugees marooned in Johannesburg, South Africa. Living in slum-like conditions, they unexpectedly find a kindred spirit in a government agent (Sharlto Copley) exposed to their biotechnology. The movie, which has been steadily building buzz for months, is already being praised by critics for its deft blend of action and intelligence. The Hollywood Reporter calls it “smart, savvy filmmaking of the highest order” and, in a cover story, Entertainment Weekly deems District 9 “the must-see movie of the summer.”

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