Michael Fassbender is ROBOCOP?

Director Jose Padilha reveals the X-Men: First Class actor is his first choice to play the powerful cyborg cop in his remake of the 80’s action franchise that should begin filming in February.

Matt Holmes

Editorial Team

Michael Fassbender is the pretty blonde cheerleader two weeks before prom who is wanted by every jock, geek and inbetweener for the big dance. A couple of days ago we heard the German born-Irish actor, who should probably pick up his first Oscar nomination for the sex addict drama Shame that won him a Best Actor award in Venice, was Steven Soderbergh’s first choice to replace George Clooney as Napoleon Solo in his remake of the 60’s spy show The Man From U.N.C.L.E. that begins filming in February.

Now thanks to Bleeding Cool who have translated an appearance from Elite Squad series director Jose Padilha on Brazillian TV channel Globo 1, we know that Fassbender is his number one choice to play RoboCop in his reboot of the 80’s action franchise that similarly shoots around February time.

Fassbender can’t take two dates to the prom with him early next year, so obviously if firm offers were on the table he would have to choose between Warner Bros’ Man From U.N.C.L.E. and MGM’s RoboCop (or not doing any of them at all of course), but as a promising film star clearly the former is the more obviously beneficial to ones career. Not only would it be a film from a seasoned actor’s helmer but it’s a blockbuster at a major studio that will actually show his face on screen throughout where obviously in RoboCop you are behind a mask for the majority of the film. You are not the star… your body movement, voice on a costume is.

So I think Padilha will fight a battle he can’t win here if it comes down to a straight choice between the two projects for the actor.

Here’s more quotes on RoboCop from Padilha;

I’ll film Robocop. I’m indeed writing the script, the writer is here with me in Rio, we’ve spent over the last 15 days working together, refining the script.

That screenwriter is Josh Zetumer, a scribe who did un-credited work on Quantum of Solace, the shelved Dune remake and a draft of what would have been Bourne 4 for Matt Damon & Paul Greengrass. Finally it looks like one of his writings is going to get made and clearly the last fortnight he and Padilha have been nailing down their final draft to showcase MGM before serious pre-production & casting can take place before filming next year.

He says;

I’ll be traveling this friday back to LA, bringing this new version to discuss with the studio, and maybe begin with the casting, selecting actors… and the idea is to begin filming in February – February or March. That’s the idea, y’know, we never know in the american movie industry. We’re just delivering the project, but also we depend on the schedule of the actors… it’s tough.

I can’t talk yet, it’s too early to speak, but there are some actors I like. I really like the Fassbender, I’d like to talk to him – I’ll talk to him. There’s a possibility… and there’s a lot of other great actors that would play RoboCop. But that’s the idea, to film around January, February, March.

So it sounds like if MGM likes the script and if they can go out and find an actor they can all agree on to lead the project, RoboCop will be good to go in February for a summer 2013 release.

But will it be with Michael Fassbender in the costume?

Seems unlikely. As I said above The Man From U.N.C.L.E. must surely have the edge on RoboCop which if it is a hit will be a ‘blockbuster every other year’ type deal and Fassbender has already got one of those potentially in X-Men: First Class and depending on his character’s fate in Ridley Scott’s Prometheus (ironically as an Android, in what is essentially the Ian Holm role in Alien) another one brewing… he probably wouldn’t want to sign away his career to popcorn feeding multiplex parts forever.

Clearly he is a man who enjoys his genre/arthouse work as can be seen in Shame, A Dangerous Method and even Jane Eyre. That argument of course could be made for why he wouldn’t want to do U.N.C.L.E. too as WB want a trilogy out of that but from what we hear those films might be spread out like the Mission: Impossible franchise and it could be years between movies, a little less pressure. That’s if WB even think his name is big enough, even after appearing in X-Men and Inglourious Basterds, but that’s another argument.

More info of course as this develops and if Padilha is closing on to a February shoot we will obviously hear before Christmas who his RoboCop is. Obviously it would be cool if it was Fassbender but I can’t see him taking it… can you?