VHS Club: RoboCop Trivia
RoboCop. A movie with a name nobody could take seriously. It was turned down by studios, actors, and directors based on the name alone, including Dutch director Paul Verhouven himself who tossed it in the trash after reading the first page. Luckily, his wife encouraged him to read more, and Paul realized what the execs at Orion also did, despite the silly title, it was actually a well written, engaging, and human story. And just what did the movie with the dumb name do? It spawned 2 sequels, a reboot, two live action TV series’, two animated series’, 9 video games, at least 20 comics series, Kentucky Fried Chicken tie-ins, and every product imaginable including RoboCop bubble bath. Plus, RoboCop rescued Pee-wee Herman at that year’s Oscars.
- The story takes place in a dystopian version of what city?
A: Detroit. The movie was actually shot almost entirely in Dallas with a stint in Pittsburg. The gas station explosion caused law changes in Dallas due to the residual damage it did to the neighboring buildings.
- What is the name of the mega corporation that funds the creation of RoboCop?
A: Omni Consumer Products. The subtext of the film is steeped in 80s corporate corruption and greed.
- RoboCop the cyborg gets the green light after the failed test of what completely robotic law enforcement prototype?
A: ED-209. ED-209’s malfunction in the OCP boardroom was based on Neumeier’s office daydreams about a robot bursting into a meeting and killing everyone. That’s fairly twisted. I think we should be concerned about Neumeier.
- How many RoboCop film sequels are there?
A: RoboCop 1 and 3. There was also a reboot, two live actionTV series, two animated series’, 9 video games and at least 20 comics series’.
- Ed Neumeier got the idea for RoboCop while working (sneaking onto) the set of what sci fi film and imagining a robot next to the flying cars called Spinners?
A: Blade Runner. Interestingly Neumeier was a script reader for the studio and discovered Risky Business – which got him a promotion to executive.
- RoboCop writer and creator Edward Neumeier reteamed with Paul Verhoven for what 1997 sci fi war satire starring Neil Patrick Harris and Denise Richards?
A: Starship Troopers. Johnny Rico and co vs. the Arachnids. “It’s afraid!”
- What star of an earlier, financially successful Orion studios cyborg film did Orion originally want to play RoboCop?
A: Schwartzeneggar, but he was deemed too big to look right in the costume. Verhouven Verhoeven said he hired Peter Weller because “his chin was very good”? He was also slim in build because he was a health nut and ran marathons making him look better in the suit. The producers also thought he had great lips.
- Peter Weller was no stranger to Sci Fi as he starred three years earlier in what bizarre sci fi adventure film that is now a cult classic with entirely too long of a name?
A: The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension. It wasn’t a hit in the US, but did well overseas. It also stars John Lithgow, Jeff Goldblum, and Christopher Lloyd.
- Kurtwood Smith who plays Clarence Boddicker spent 8 seasons on what sitcom that made stars out of Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher?
A: That 70s Show, He played Red Forman. Kurtwood when receiving the script was disappointed and took the role because he was a struggling actor and thought “it might be fun.”
- The special effects artist Rob Bottin who is responsible for the iconic Robocop suit worked on the effects for what John Carpenter sci fi horror film?
A: The Thing
- RoboCop 2 was written by what famed comic book writer who has been inducted into the Will Eisner Award Hall of Fame and is known for The Dark Knight Returns, Sin City, and 300?
A: Frank Miller. Also Robocop 2 was directed by Irvin Kirshner who directed Empire Strikes Back. So check out Robocop 2 is what I’m saying.
- There is a new RoboCop film in the works that is being written by Neumeier as a direct sequel to the first film and ignoring the sequels and reboot. What is this new sequel called?
A: RoboCop Returns. Neal Blomkamp the director of District 9 was attached the direct but is no longer directing. Abe Forsythe was most recently set to direct. He is a fairly obscure Australian director. He did Little Monsters – a zombie movie.
- Phil Tippet gave the job creating and animating ED-209 to a subordinate because he thought the film seemed silly. Phil Tippet was a famed stop motion effects guy who worked on the AT-AT or at at Walkers in the Hoth sequence and more for what other legendary sci fi film?
A: Empire Strikes Back.
- Nancy Allen had already been in films from famed directors Steven Spielberg, Robert Zemeckis, and Brian DePalma by the time RoboCop came around. What Steven King adaptation directed by DePalma and starring the blood-soaked high school outcast Sissy Spacek was her first film role in?
A: Carrie. She was actually married to Brian DePalma and was in multiple films of his.
- The director wanted Nancy Allen to be more masculine for her role. So they cut her hair and asked her to gain weight. A friend also suggested that she wear what under her costume to get into the right masculine mindset?
A: Men’s briefs.
- An early inspiration for the RoboCop design came from the comic book 2000 AD, featuring another law enforcement character who was brought to life years later by Sylvester Stallone and then Karl Urban?
A: Judge Dredd. The design looked alot like Judge Dredd, but the final design was inspired by a Japanese artist who drew sexy robots.
Tie Breaker: How many squibs was the actor who is shot up in the boardroom by Ed 209 wearing for that scene? Closest to the correct amount gets it!
A: 200 squibs.
VHS Club is a monthly screening of a video store era classic at Green Light Cinema in Saint Petersburg, FL, with trivia and prizes sponsored by Screen Fix podcast.