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As a child of the ’80’s, I think I’m pre-programmed to automatically react with fond nostalgia and perhaps a quote or two when hearing a reference to the 1986 film Short Circuit. So it’s with conflicting emotions that I share an update on the subject of the reboot that’s in the works. On one hand, we could all sigh at the topic of yet another attempt to squeeze some more juice out of a beloved film from yesteryear (I’m intentionally ignoring the Sheedy/Guttenberg-less sequel). And on the other hand, maybe the world needs another movie about a big-hearted malfunctioning robot with a craving for input and an appreciation for The Three Stooges.
One of the things that made Short Circuit work was that kids thought it was funny and wanted to be friends with Johnny 5, and grown-ups also thought it was funny and found it entertaining. Call it a combination of the Guttenberg Effect (see also: Police Academy, Three Men and a Baby) and the fact that it existed in an era when films could include phrases like “No shit. Where see shit?” and “I am thinking she is a virgin. Or at least she used to be.” and still be considered relatively family friendly (PG rating, anyway). Whether or not the reboot will have the same balanced appeal remains to be seen. What it does have is a writer.
Dimension Films made the announcement today that Matt Lieberman has been hired to pen the screenplay for the Short Circuit “reimagining.” Per the input shared by Dimension, Lieberman “is a recent alumni of the Disney writers program” and is set to work closely with the film’s director Tim Hill.
As for specifics on the reimagining beyond the fact that it will exist, Dimension is mum on the details at this point, but with a writer signed on, it’s clear they’re looking to move forward with it. They're aiming to begin shooting at the end of the year with a targeted Summer 2013 release.