Sharlto Copley has conjured up all kinds of unusual and unhinged characters since breaking out in 2009’s District 9, and now we’re going to get to see what he can do when he’s not just creating a character, but a whole world. Copley is set to make his directorial debut with the sci-fi comedy Sapien Safari, based on his own script. Copley will also star in the film, which comes from QC Entertainment.
Per Deadline, Sapien Safari is “a social comedy that focuses on alien naturalist Riblik — the Steve Irwin of the galaxy — who faces an uphill battle to convince the green new owner of Earth that its dominant wildlife species is worth protecting.”
“In an increasingly risk-averse environment, the team at QC have been an enormous blessing. They have an eye for bold, edgy and original material with commercial potential,” says Copley. “Once on board, they wholeheartedly back the filmmaker. One can’t ask for more.”
“Sharlto is an artist who brings a rare blend of wit, depth and unabashed enthusiasm to everything he takes on,” said QC’s Sean McKittrick, Ray Mansfield and Edward H. Hamm Jr.. “We were immediately all in on partnering with Sharlto on his wildly imaginative and unique vision for a social comedy.”
QC Entertainment is riding high on another actor-turned-director debut — Jordan Peele‘s Get Out, which became the surprise hit of 2017 and is up for four major category Oscars at the 90th Annual Academy Awards: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and Best Actor.
After a two-year run on the series Powers, Copley was last seen as the weasely gun-runner Vernon in Ben Wheatley‘s slapstick shootout, Free Fire. Next up, the actor will appear in Nash Edgerton’s comedy Gringo. One thing’s for sure, If he can harness even half the weirdness, originality, and intensity he brings to his roles, his feature film debut is going to be something special.
There are no details yet on a production or release timeline for Sapien Safari, so stay tuned.