There’s little doubt you’ll be hearing much more about young up-and-comer Todd Lincoln in the next year. Prior to being attached as the director/co-writer of the big-screen adaptation of HACK/SLASH for Rogue Pictures, Lincoln was ensnared in Fox Searchlight’s web where he drafted a second remake of THE FLY with his writing partner Martin Schenk.
Favoring the 1958 Kurt Neumann-directed FLY over David Cronenberg’s delectable 1986 display of gooey makeup FX trickery, Lincoln revisited the original George Langelaan short story that first appeared in Playboy before embarking on the latest upgrade. What he and his partner wound up hatching “was a complete outside-the-box re-imagining,” Lincoln tells Fango. “It was both a love letter to and a complete departure from Neumann and Cronenberg’s films. They already nailed the perfect versions of those stories. There is no good reason to do those approaches again.”
So, Lincoln and Schenk scrapped everything the moviegoing audience knows about THE FLY—including the pair of sequels that stemmed from Neumann’s film, and the one from Cronenberg’s. “Our take had nothing to do with the Delambre family or Seth Brundle, and there are no telepods,” Lincoln reveals. “This was a completely new story. The style and tone were a dark, smooth mixture of Val Lewton, Don Siegel and Roman Polanski. Someone still became a fly, but who, how, why they became a fly, what the creature looked like and what ultimately happened to it—we conjured totally new scenarios for all those major elements.”
Even with so much fresh blood being injected into the concept, Lincoln and Schenk couldn’t help but write in a role for ’58 FLY leading man David Hedison. But for now, the question bigger than “Who the heck is Todd Lincoln, anyway?” is the status of Fox’s redux. “Last I heard, the people behind the people at the studio had changed their minds again and are leaning toward a straightforward remake,” Lincoln says. “I wish them the best.”