MGM rebooting Robocop sounded like a pretty terrible idea until they got José Padilha onboard to direct, and then it sounded awesome, because he directed Elite Squad 2 (now called Elite Squad: The Enemy Within), which opens in the US this Friday. Not to get hyperbolic, but that movie melted my face off and kicked my balls in. Now, for better or worse, everything I hear about Robocop is colored with the idea that it’s probably going to be mega-kickass. ComingSoon recently sat down with Padilha, who explained his take on the film, and it sounds basically like an origin story.
“‘RoboCop’ the first movie was fantastic,” he told us. “But even if there was no movie, the concept of ‘RoboCop’ is brilliant, first because it lends itself to a lot of social criticism, but also because it poses a question, ‘When do you lose you humanity?’ The way it does that is by replacing body parts with machine parts, and that’s very smart because guess what? It’s going to happen!”
“I have my take on it,” he continued, “And I can tell you this: In the first ‘RoboCop’ when Alex Murphy is shot, gunned down, then you see some hospitals and stuff and then you cut to him as RoboCop. My movie is between those two cuts. How do you make RoboCop? How do you slowly bring a guy to be a robot? How do you actually take humanity out of someone and how do you program a brain, so to speak, and how does that affect an individual?”
Normally I’d say that sounds like a terrible idea, because from what I understand, Robocop doesn’t shoot any drug dealers in the face between those two cuts. I’ll be honest, that was a big part of his appeal. I wasn’t interested in his humanity so much as his propensity to shoot people in the face (the fact that he could load bullets from his arm into the gun was a close second). And yet, Elite Squad 2 had an almost too-perfect amount drug dealers getting shot in the face. So you have to figure, if anyone can figure out how to work that in, it’s Padilha.
Oh, he also says the new Robocop is going to be an American.
For those Brazilians hoping that Padilha will reunite with his “Elite Squad” star Wagner Maura to play RoboCop, we have some sad news (at least for them) that in fact, the director is looking for an American actor for the role.
“We need an American RoboCop, man. RoboCop is an American guy, his name is Alex Murphy,” he said, laughing at the idea of turning Maura’s character Nascimento into an android. [ComingSoon]
Casting an American to play an American? Dude, Superman, Batman, and Spider-man are British, the casts of Akira and The Last Airbender are mostly white now, and one of the Norse Gods from Thor is a British black dude. You clearly haven’t been in this town long.