Fans get an early look at Matt Damon's "Elysium"

Matt Damon is just one of the eco-friendly stars going green in Hollywood. The actor is the co-founder of the charity Water.org, which provides clean water and sanitation in communities in Africa, South Asia and Central America. Sean Gallup/Getty Images

A few hundred fans in Los Angeles, Berlin and Sao Paolo got an early look Monday at "Elysium," the new, futuristic film from "District 9" writer-director Neill Blomkamp.

Blomkamp showed about 10 minutes of footage during a special screening. Matt Damon, who stars alongside Jodie Foster, introduced the footage in Berlin and appeared at Hollywood's Arclight Theater via satellite.

In the film, the year is 2154 and Earth belongs to the poor. The wealthiest citizens have left the planet and live on "Elysium," an idyllic, disease-free utopia they built in space. Earth is a trash-filled landscape policed unforgivingly by robotic droids. Flying military tanks patrol the sky.

According to New York magazine's Vulture blog, Blomkamp described the film as "a science-fiction take on the haves and have-nots and the separation of wealth."

Damon plays a diseased Earthling trying to infiltrate Elysium to save himself, and perhaps all of humanity. A group of Earth-bound rebels outfit him for the journey with a tentacled "strength suit." They use a drill to affix a digital box to his head that allows him to transfer brain contents as effortlessly as computer files.

Foster plays an Elysium administrator determined to keep Damon out. The star of "District 9," Sharlto Copley, plays a bearded villain who works on Earth to protect the wealthy space enclave.

"Elysium" opens in theaters on Aug. 9. A trailer for the film will debut online later Tuesday.

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