Just before they hit the stage in Hall H to plug “Total Recall”, we caught up with director Len Wiseman and Jessica Biel to talk about the reboot of one of cinema’s most beloved action blockbusters.
Biel, who plays the villianous Lori in the film, says they’re making a different film than Paul Verhoeven did. As far as she’s concerned, the 1990 movie has dated; the material is ripe for rebooting.
“That really was a very special, particular time in film and a completely different idea of the future. Now we have the ability to do way more than we ever did back in that time when the film was originally made, obviously. So we’re just doing a complete fresh take on it. Fresh idea of the characters, modern characters that I hope can continue on in film and always people be able to look back and feel that this was an amazing look of the future at this time, because our ideas are always going to change. And we’re just focusing on the relationships and the main themes of the source material, Philip K. Dick’s source material. Identity, questionable perspective of reality. In the end it’s a love story. The story of these two people that they don’t… One of them will remember if they were together and if it isn’t real and did you mess with my mind. Like… I think a lot of people can relate to that kind of an experience in a relationship. So we’re really focusing on the themes.”
Biel said she was nervous to be at Comic-Con, but enthralled all the same.
“It’s exciting. I mean, of course it’s a little nerve wracking, the teaser that we’re gonna show is very rough and we literally only… We’re only halfway through our filming, so we have so much more to do. So we’re a little nervous but excited to share with the people who are really interested and hopefully will follow us along our journey as… It’s gonna be a while before this film comes out, the next summer, I mean the summer after that, I’m not sure. But we have a long way to go. So it’s nice to just share a little bit, get some feedback and maybe make some changes. If we hear some things from the people who will be there on opening weekends.”
Biel said she might consider dressing up as a character one year – but maybe after 6pm.
“If you’re gonna wear wonder woman, for me, that’s… You go out at night in wonder woman outfit. Not in daylight. Ever. So maybe, I don’t know, maybe I would be storm trooper or something that I can just cover up and I get in, have lunch and not worry about it and maybe everybody would wanna take photos of me because I have a cool storm trooper costume on. I don’t know. [laughter]”
Wiseman says he was a huge fan of Verhoeven’s original.
“Yeah I was, and it was a long time ago when I first saw it; obviously watching that movie, we realized it’s a very particular tone that I think that belongs to that period of time. So it’s interesting to get a chance to remake that.”
Wiseman said he’s a bit concerned he’ll be assaulted by fans before they even have a chance to see his version.
“It’s kind of scary because people who are really fans of a movie are territorial about it. So we’ll see. We want to make sure that we are respectful and that we please them.”