Colin Farrell totally recalls unease about "Total Recall"

Wed Aug 1, 2012 3:27pm EDT
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By Zorianna Kit

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Twenty-two years after the blockbuster success of the Arnold Schwarzenegger action film "Total Recall," actor Colin Farrell is stepping into the muscleman's big shoes in a reboot, but if it seems like a dream job, Farrell initially was not so gung-ho.

As flattered as the 36-year-old Irish actor was to be offered the part, he admits "there was a part of me that was honestly afraid of judgment of people" who held the original film so dear to their hearts.

"Films to some of us feel sacrosanct and the idea of remaking something seems like an insult to the original when in fact it's not," he told reporters at a recent press conference to promote the movie.

To cure his unease, the actor sat down with director Len Wiseman, talked about changes to the new movie and decided it was clear the makers wanted a somewhat different tale - one with slightly less brawn and a bit more brain.

"While honoring the same conventions and concepts and narrative plot points as the original story, this seemed to stand on its own," Farrell said.

The first movie in 1990 was directed by Paul Verhoeven and starred Sharon Stone and former bodybuilder Schwarzenegger who was then at the top of his action hero form.

The sci-fi tale was loosely based on a story by writer Philip K. Dick and told of a man who goes on a "virtual vacation" in his mind to Mars only to find he is being hunted, and he must fight his way back to reality. "Total Recall" became a huge hit, raking in $260 million at worldwide box offices.

The new film is also based on Dick's story "We Can Remember It For You Wholesale" and co-stars Jessica Biel, Bryan Cranston and Wiseman's real-life wife, Kate Beckinsale. Farrell plays the same basic character, Douglas Quaid, who takes a vacation by strapping himself in a chair and going on a 'mind trip'.   Continued...

Irish actor Colin Farrell poses during a photocall as part of the presentation of the film "Total Recall" in Paris July 9, 2012. REUTERS/Jacky Naegelen