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Steven Spielberg Says 'Robopocalypse' Will Be Set 15-20 Years In The Future, Center On Man Vs. Machine War

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by Benjamin Wright
January 12, 2012 2:55 PM
4 Comments
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Steven Spielberg Robopocalypse

Now that the dust has settled on the hectic holiday movie-going season, we can look back at the successes and failures, and honor the films that made it out alive (and with respectable box office grosses). Among those titles were two hotly anticipated projects from the bearded one himself, Steven Spielberg. While neither “The Adventures of Tintin” or “War Horse” blew the competition out of the water (though to be fair 'Tintin' never had a shot at duplicating its overseas success stateside), both films proved that the legendary Hollywood wunderkind is still operating at the height of his powers despite perceived flaws in either film.

So what’s next for Spielberg? A loaded question indeed, because when he’s not directing, he’s producing multi-million dollar grossing films and franchises, along with a bevy of other surprising ventures that maintain his status as one of the most interesting living directors we have. As far as his directing gigs though, he’s wrapping up the Daniel Day Lewis-starring Abraham Lincoln biopic “Lincoln” now, and after that, he's set to direct an adaptation of the bestselling Daniel H. Wilson novel “Robopocalypse.”

While there hasn’t been a ton of information on Spielberg’s adaptation yet, which will feature a screenplay from the pen of “Cabin in the Woods” and “Cloverfield” honcho Drew Goddard, it appears as if Spielberg is starting to let some information fly. Buried within a recent interview with Time Out London’s Tom Huddleston while doing press for “War Horse,” Spielberg confirms “Robocalypse” is next after Goddard’s script convinced him, stating “It all starts with the script: it’s not worth taking myself away from my family if I don’t have something I’m really passionate about.”

Though it’s what Spielberg says about the project that confirms longtime producer Kathleen Kennedy’s recent statement that "I think there are elements that are similar to 'A.I.,' 'Minority Report,' things he's done in the past, and he just views it as the next extension of those kinds of stories." Spielberg seems to agree. “It’s a movie about a global war between man and machine,’ the director tells Time Out. “I had a great time creating the future on ‘Minority Report,’ and it’s a future that is coming true faster than any of us thought it would. ‘Robopocalypse’ takes place in 15 or 20 years, so it’ll be another future we can relate to. It’s about the consequences of creating technologies which make our lives easier, and what happens when that technology becomes smarter than we are. It’s not the newest theme, it’s been done throughout science fiction, but it’s a theme that becomes more relevant every year.”

While the rest of the interview is certainly worth the read, with Spielberg ruminating on his lengthy and successful career, the nugget of information on “Robopocalypse” is most intriguing. Prior to the director’s years-long absence following “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom Crystal Skull,” he was heading into much darker territory than he’s ever explored (outside of "Schindler's List," of course) with “Minority Report,” “Munich,” and even the big blockbusters like “War of the Worlds.” The recent 'Tintin' and “War Horse” have been a bit of break from that, but Spielberg heading into darker territory still always yields interesting results.

“Robopocalypse” will land on July 3, 2013.

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4 Comments

  • James | January 12, 2012 8:47 PMReply

    Anyone who wants to know how the film of "Robopocalypse" will turn out should just read the novel. Although it owes a very heavy debt to "World War Z", it does not share that novel's unfilmable structure. "Robopocalpyse" reads quickly, almost like a novelization of a movie. It's very linear and has a few clear protagonists, unlike "Z" which consists of about 100 short stories with no consistent characters except the narrator they're all told to.

    I highly suspect the film ROBOPOCALYSE will not really be that different from the book. Reading it I felt more like I was watching a Spielberg film than reading a novel, not that I'm complaining:)

  • speily boy | January 12, 2012 6:48 PMReply

    Good article. So is Kristen Wiig going to do bridesmaids 2?

  • PTA | January 12, 2012 4:35 PMReply

    Exclusive: The plot of the movie "Robopocalypse" will be based on the novel Robopocalyspe.

  • JoJo | January 12, 2012 2:57 PMReply

    But what does Melissa McCarthy say?

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