The first official photo from Guillermo del Toro’s sci-fi epic Pacific Rim has been released. It features Idris Elba suited up as Stacker Pentecost, one of the pilots of the robots used in the war against large creatures that surfaced from the ocean.

During an interview, del Toro shined some light on some of the effects — and as some of you know, I’m a fan of practical effects, so this has me stoked:

“When we’re talking about the physicality of the fight, we ended up building several blocks of Hong Kong. And literally demolished them. … We built a building and then we took down the buildings. We built command centers of the robots that were the size of the house. We started them on hydraulic rigs that shoot and elevated them and moved them round so you could really get a sense of the physical nature driving a robot like this.”

–Guillermo del Toro

I am really interested in how this movie will turn out.

Pacific Rim releases in theaters July 12, 2013.