Elaborating, he went on: “It didn’t have anything to do with the creative part of it. I was desperate to work with James Cameron – I still am.”
As intriguing a prospect as it would have been to see Damon in full performance-captured, viperwolf-battling mode – assuming he wasn’t actually lined up to play Grace Augustine – it’s easy to see why a long stint in New Zealand, away from his family, might have been a deterrent.
Damon went on to draw interesting parallels between Cameron and his Elysium director, Neill Blomkamp. “I talked to Jim Cameron about Avatar before he made that movie and when he talked about that world he saw it completely”, he remembered, “he’d invented it in his head already – and that was what it was like talking to Neill”.
Watch the trailer here or better yet, pick up the September issue of Empire for much more on Elysium. The new issue – onsale right now – reveals plenty about the latest Blomkamp sci-fi masterclass, with director, star and co-star Sharlto Copley all contributing to a fascinating piece.
Elysium is out on August 21.