Verbal Diorama - Episode 163 - District 9 - Verbal Diorama

Episode 163

District 9

It's not every first time director who hits it out of the park with their first feature, especially one based on an original idea, with an unknown cast.

Luckily (or rather unluckily for Halo), an existing project that had brought them together had crumbled, and so a partnership began between powerhouse producer Peter Jackson, fresh off his The Lord of the Rings trilogy and newcomer Neill Blomkamp.

Based on Blomkamp's 6-minute short film Alive in Joburg, District 9 takes South Africa's recent history and translates it into a science fiction satire, asking the simple question of "How would humans treat alien refugees?" and is it really any different to "How would white people treat black people?"

While District 9 has its controversies and critics, it was a fresh and interesting take on the alien invasion genre in 2009, and while you would have thought a sequel would be forthcoming rather quickly, District 10 has never quite materialised...

Alive in Joburg is available to watch at

I would love to hear your thoughts on District 9 !



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About the Podcast

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Verbal Diorama
The podcast on the history and legacy of movies you know, and movies you don't.

About your host

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Em .

Hi! I'm Em. I created Verbal Diorama in 2018, and launched the podcast in February 2019 to rapturous applause and acclaim.... from my cat Jess.

The modus operandi of Verbal Diorama is simple: movies are tough to make! The coming together of a team of people from all walks of life to make something to entertain, delight and educate us for 90+ mins is not an easy task, and yet so many succeed at it. That must be something to celebrate.

I'm here to do just that - to celebrate movies. Their history and legacy, and why they remain so special to so many of us.

Episodes are book ended by my cat Jess. She sadly passed away in March 2022, aged almost 18. She featured in many episodes of the podcast, and that's why you can hear her at the end of every episode. The role of official feline producer is now held by nine-month-old Evie.

I love podcasts and listen to many, but never my own.

I unashamedly love The Mummy (1999) and Grease 2. I'm still looking for a cool rider.