July 25, 2008 / 3:35 AM / 11 years ago

Aronofsky takes helm of "RoboCop" revamp

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Somewhere, there is a crime happening.

Indeed. But “RoboCop” is coming out of retirement courtesy of director Darren Aronofsky and writer David Self. The writer-director of “The Fountain” and the writer of “Road to Perdition” have signed deals to develop a big-budget 21st century installment in the saga of the human-machine hybrid crime fighter.

MGM plans to release the film in 2010.

The original “RoboCop,” written by Edward Neumeier and Michael Miner, was directed with camp adroitness by Paul Verhoeven in 1987 and released by Orion Pictures. It focused on a mortally wounded cop (Peter Weller) in a futuristic, crime-ridden Detroit who returns to fight corruption in the guise of a tough-talking cyborg. Sequels followed in 1990 and 1993, along with TV series and video games. RoboCop retains a sizable fan base online.

Mary Parent, chairman of MGM’s worldwide motion picture group, and MGM chairman-CEO Harry Sloan announced their “RoboCop” revival in May at the Cannes Film Festival. They aim to rebuild the do-gooding manbot using the latest filmmaking technology and spending as much as $100 million on the budget. The tone and feel would be similar to the first movie.

Aronofsky recently wrapped “The Wrestler,” a drama starring Marisa Tomei, Evan Rachel Wood and Mickey Rourke.

Self has written screenplays for “Thirteen Days” and Universal’s upcoming “Wolf Man” remake.

In resuscitating the MGM brand, Parent and company have been delving into the studio’s library for remake material. Revamps of “Red Dawn,” “Fame,” “Poltergeist” and “Death Wish” are all in the works.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

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