Michael Keaton Joins RoboCop

Replacing Hugh Laurie

There was palpable disappointment (and, yes, relief from some Laurie fans), when it emerged that Hugh Laurie’s negotiations for a role in the RoboCop reboot had broken down. Now director Jose Padilha has locked in Michael Keaton to play the role instead.

While the details are still largely being kept quiet, the role was listed as the head of Omni Corp when Laurie was being touted, which probably means Keaton will be up to no good.

The new RoboCop finds Joel Kinnaman in the metal suit as murdered cop Alex Murphy, reborn in cyborg form. He’ll be overseen by Gary Oldman’s scientist and trained by Jackie Earle Haley’s military man. Plus he’ll come into contact with wife-turned-technical widow Ellen (Abbie Cornish), media mogul Pat Novak (Samuel L Jackson) and partner Lewis (Michael Kenneth Williams).

Also in the cast are Jay Baruchel and Marianne Jean-Baptiste. Padilha is set to start shooting shortly in Toronto and issued an enthusiastic statement about the final chunk of casting: “Michael is the final addition to the amazing cast we have assembled for this film and it is so great to have the last puzzle piece in place," Padilha said in a statement. "It is thrilling that everything has come together to bring this innovative new vision of RoboCop to life. We’ve got a great script, a great cast, some killer ED-209s and I can’t wait to get Alex Murphy back on the streets." Which is a little bit different from what he’s apparently been telling friends. Let’s hope things improve once production kicks off…