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[Movies] Joel Kinnaman Talks About Why He Wanted To Make Robocop
Posted by Joseph Lee on 02.03.2014

In an interview with IGN, Joel Kinnaman spoke about why he signed on to play Alex Murphy in the Robocop remake.

On why he signed on to star in the film: "Jose Padhila, the director. When I first heard Robocop was going to be remade. I said "Yeah, that's interesting, I'll probably watch that at some point, but I'm not interested at all to be in it." Then I found out that Jose wanted to do it and meet me, which I was very flattered by. I followed his work from way before he was going to do this movie, and I was very impressed with both his political analysis of Brazil and the style of filmmaking. The quality of his action that he blends with a very strong visual sense and very strong acting. For me he's one of the big young directors. After I met him and he told me his vision for this movie, it was something that I really wanted to do. And I had to fight for it. It wasn't an easily won audition. I had to audition three times. It was while I was filming The Killing up in Vancouver, so I was going up and down. At this point in my career, I'd done a TV show that had given me some visibility in the States, but I was still hearing from directors that were interested in doing a movie with me that they couldn't have me in the lead because I wasn't a name, even though I was the best person for the part. It's not bankable – that whole rhetoric. So at some point I wanted to take a step into a bigger movie so that I could get to a position so that I could be of help to a director that wanted to get a movie made. To a certain degree, as an actor, the only way we have to define our artistry is by our choices. What choices we make. Because we're not authors of our own projects. So of course you want to have as many options as possible. So I wanted a bigger movie that would elevate me hopefully to some degree. But I still really, really hope that that opportunity will be something with quality, and I felt that this was that."

On research he did before the shoot: "I read a couple of books about neuroscience and the relationship between the mind and the body. There are some philosophical questions that are raised in this movie – Where is the soul? Where is the personality? Is it just in the mind or is it in the body? What do you lose of your personality when you lose your body? And when you have a body that mimics a lost limb. The philosophy of this is that the phantom memory is recreated digitally and manifested in the body. So there are signatures of Alex's body language that are expressed in his robotic body. But in terms of research, it was was more like walking through the script over and over again… I did more research for Alex before he became Robocop. And the reality of his life. That was what I was preparing for. Then after the accident happened I'm sort of finding a way to deal with that like Alex was doing."

On if they kept any of Robocop's signature lines: "We kept one. We've tried to stay away from all those references, because we're trying to make a very different movie in a completely different universe that does not have Verhoeven's tone. So it feels like that would be untruthful to what we're doing. But we kept one..."


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