Comic-Con 2013: Robocop Footage Rocks Hall H
Dead or alive...?
Team RoboCop turned up at Comic-Con to pimp the remake of the classic 1987 Paul Verhoeven film, walking out onto the stage to the tune of the original movie's theme. You might have read about what the cast and director had to say already, but in addition to opinions, they also brought some unfinished footage and a more polished trailer (look out for it online soon).
The exclusive Comic-Con clip showed off Samuel L. Jackson as Pat Novak, a Bill O’Reilly style TV pundit reporting on the Omnicorp defence programme using ED-209s and humanoid robots on the streets of Tehran, sweeping for terrorists in a stair-free area.
Immensely impressed by the robots’ peacekeeping efforts, Novak asks why the robots can’t be used in America. Cut to a senatorial panel where senators are questioning the whole concept, grilling Michael Keaton’s Raymond Sellars, the villanous CEO of OmniCorp. "Do they feel if they kill a child?” “They feel nothing”, says Sellars. Cut to a young kid in Tehran getting blasted by an ED-209 just for holding a knife. Cut the feed!
Something to be aware of: undercover cop Alex Murphy (Joel Kinnaman) doesn’t actually die, with his robo-armour effectively a life support system after he is struck down by a car bomb in his own front yard.
This results a battle between his mechanical side and his soul, as well as a battle between his mechanical side and a variety of goons, which are shown being analysed, Arkham Asylum-style, from behind his handy flip-down-for-fighting, flip-up-for-speaking K.I.T.T.-from-Knight-Rider / Cylon-from-Battlestar-Galalactica visor.
According to his creator, scientist Dr. Robert Norton (Gary Oldman), the machine takes over when needed, particularly in tactical situations. And so we are shown lots of action scenes, RoboCop on his motorbike, gunning down foes. There's also a tense scene which sees Murphy 'arguing' with his wife Ellen (Abbie Cornish) before copping Detroit robotically. The suit looks sleek and very manoeuvrable, but may get a bit of getting used to for anyone who regularly says, “I’d buy that for a dollar!” in general conversation.
On that topic, there were elements from the original to be seen, notably the line “Dead or alive, you're coming with me” as well as the original 1984 RoboCop get-up on Dr. Norton’s design screen, something that Sellars waves away swiftly, asking for something a little bit more black...
RoboCop is out on February 7 in the US and the UK.