Fritz Lang’s Metropolis getting a remake, this time as a TV show

Fritz Lang's Metropolis
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Mr Robot’s Sam Esmail will be helming an episodic reimagining of Frtiz Lang’s 1927 silent-era masterpiece, Metropolis.

Metropolis still stands as one of, if not the most ambitious films of the silent era. With its towering spires and vast dystopian cityscapes, everything from Blade Runner's future noir L.A. to Tim Burton’s Gotham City in 1989’s Batman has been influenced by the film in some way.

However, with a long running time and no spoken dialogue, it’s a film that many have never seen, although wider audiences will soon be exposed to the story with the news that Apple TV+ has commissioned a remake of the German Expressionist classic, but this time as a series rather than a film.

The project will be created by Sam Esmail, whose clever take on technology and the instability of modern life in Mr Robot, seems a good fit for a retelling of this particular film. Debuting in 1927, Metropolis presented a futuristic dystopia where inequality led to the creation of two separated classes in the megalopolis that names the film. Living on the top of skyscrapers are the politicians and wealthy industrialists who rule Metropolis, while the workers dwell on the ground while turning the wheels of the machines that keep the city alive.

The story follows the son of the city’s master, who joins a leader of the workers while trying to bridge the differences between the two classes and build a better future for everyone.’

Esmail will be rewriting the story himself, and if the project draws fresh eyes to the wonder of the original film, the that’s no bad thing at all. As well as creating Metropolis, which many film fans view as the first science-fiction film, Lang also helmed Spione (Spies) which is generally credited with being the film that launched the espionage genre. As the godfather of several movie genres, it’s good to see that Lang’s work is still being appreciated today.


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