'Short Circuit' Remake Being Developed Yet Again

Short Circuit, the 1986 comedy featuring robot Johnny 5, is getting a remake – with a Latin-American/Hispanic-American take. Spyglass Media Group is developing the remake, with Eduardo Cisneros and Jason Shuman tapped to handle the script. In the original movie, an experimental military robot is struck by lightning and gains a human-like intelligence.

Hey kids, do you remember Short Circuit? It was a sci-fi comedy from 1986 that featured lovable robot Johnny 5 and actor Fisher Stevens in brownface. It was a hit and even spawned a sequel. And now, it’s getting a remake. Variety reports that Spyglass Media is developing a Short Circuit remake and that writers Eduardo Cisneros and Jason Shuman to bring Latin-American/Hispanic-American elements to the story. Cisneros and Shuman’s credits include the screenplay for the upcoming comedy Half Brothers, which is set to arrive in December.

In the original Short Circuit, “When one of an experimental range of military robots is hit by lightning, it is given consciousness. It escapes from the military and befriends a young woman, Stephanie Speck. Its creator, Newton Crosby, is desperate to find it, or his entire project may be scrapped.” Ally Sheedy, Steve Guttenberg, Fisher Stevens, Austin Pendleton, and G. W. Bailey, starred, with Tim Blaney as the voice of the robot, who was officially named Number 5 but eventually given the nickname Johnny 5. Saturday Night Fever director John Badham helmed the film.

This isn’t the first time talk of a Short Circuit sequel has surfaced. Back in 2008, Dimension Films scored the rights to the material and planned a remake, with Robot Chicken writer Dan Milano handling the script. In 2009, Paul Blart: Mall Cop director Steve Carr signed on to direct the project. But Carr eventually left the project, and by 2012, it was announced that Tim Hill (Hop) was writing and directing a remake that was going to age down the main character into a pre-teen. Needless to say, none of these remakes made it passed the drawing board.

Project X Entertainment’s James Vanderbilt, Paul Neinstein, and William Sherak will produce this new attempt at a remake, with Rehab Entertainment’s John W. Hyde, who executive produced the original film, serving as executive producer along with Terissa Kelton. This isn’t the only remake/reboot on the docket for Spyglass and Project X – they’re also handling the new Scream movie, which is currently in production.

Do people still care about Short Circuit? Is it the type of property audiences are itching for? I really don’t know. I can’t remember the last time I even heard someone bring it up. But hey, maybe there’s an entire world of Short Circuit enthusiasts out there just waiting for this news.

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