From District 9 scored last summer as a breakthrough sci-fi film that fused the mundane grit of a politically dysfunctional society with classic alien elements. Operating simultaneously as apartheid metaphor, personal drama and shoot-’em-up spectacle, the movie coalesced through an intensely creative collaborative process that was rife with trial and error.

As documented in upcoming book The Art of District 9, Weta Workshop practiced the design equivalent of Method acting. Beyond crafting cool-looking effects, artisans working under the direction of Peter Jackson’s go-to effects expert — The Lord of the Rings Oscar-winner Richard Taylor — embedded behavior and motivation into their freakish models of aliens, weapons and spaceships. More..

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