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Black Mirror: 5 Filmmakers Who Need To Make The U.S. Version

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Black MirrorHere at Giant Freakin’ Robot, our love for the British anthology series Black Mirror is almost as unhealthy as its characters’ connections to the world around them. So when it was announced that the show would be getting a U.S. remake down the line, internal jubilation and despair duked it out, with optimism coming out ahead in the end. But only if the right person is doing it.

Part of what makes creator Charlie Brooker’s future so constantly intriguing is that each of the show’s seven episodes so wholly exudes his singular vision of madness’ trickle effect through gadgetry and pop culture. (Even in the episode he didn’t write.) And so here are five creative minds that we would love to see get behind a domestic Black Mirror, where their own versions of dystopian progress could haunt the world in proper fashion. Fingers crossed.

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John Lithgow Turned Down The Lead In Cronenberg’s The Fly Because It Was Gross

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LithgowJohn Lithgow has inhabited some unforgettable science fiction roles over the years. Dr. Lizardo in The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension. The eccentric alien Dick Solomon in Third Rock from the Sun. Dr. Walter Curnow in one of my favorite movies of all time, 2010: The Year We Make Contact. Hell, he even played William Shatner(’s role) in the Twilight Zone movie! But it turns out there was one major genre role that could have been his…if only he didn’t think it was so darn gross.

Speaking to In Magazine, Lithgow revealed that he could have played the role of obsessive scientist Dr. Seth Brundle, which eventually went to Jeff Goldblum. If you recall, Brundle is working on the secrets of teleportation, but when he decides to test the tech himself, he gets his DNA scrambled with that of a fly. What proceeds then is a goopy, bloppy, slimy tour de force of Cronenberg brilliance. At first it all seems good — he’s stronger, his sex drive is up, and so on. But then his deterioration, both mental and physical, begins. Soon his fingernails are falling out, he’s (literally) climbing the walls, and he’s vomiting digestive enzymes on his food — which, at one point, is one dude’s foot. It’s thoroughly gross, and it’s thoroughly Cronenberg. But it was apparently beyond the pale for Lithgow.

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Check Out This Production Art From David Cronenberg’s Aborted Total Recall

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With the Total Recall chugging its way toward us this summer, whether we like it or not, I’ve been thinking a lot about how much fun the original movie was. Sure, it’s a Schwarzenegger movie, so there’s plenty of cheese and bad one-liners, but it’s all wrapped around a surprisingly good story about memory and the nature of reality. Okay, it’s not that surprising since it was based on Philip K. Dick’s short story, “We Can Remember It For You Wholesale.” The bizarre mixture of Arnie action tropes, Paul Verhoeven’s bizarre sensibilities, Dick’s brain-bending, and a genuine sense of wonder and mystery — all unlikely allies — somehow combine to make a movie that works far better than it has any right to. But before Verhoeven and Schwarzenegger got their asses to Mars, director David Cronenberg spent a year developing the project. What would his version of Total Recall have looked like? Now we can find out, courtesy of artist Ron Miller, who has posted a selection of production art he created for Cronenberg’s version of the film over at io9.