Dead or alive, Neill Blomkamp is not coming with RoboCop.

Blomkamp was announced as the director of a new RoboCop movie, RoboCop Returns, last summer. Rather than another reboot like the 2014 movie, Blomkamp’s film was supposedly positioned as a direct sequel to the 1987 original by director Paul Verhoeven, in much the same way Superman Returns was positioned as a sequel to Superman and Superman II while pretending Superman III and Superman IV: The Quest for Peace were cruel pranks on the audience.

Unfortunately, it seems like the RoboCop fanbase is now subject to some cruelty of its own, as Blomkamp has announced on his Twitter account that after a year of work he is abandoning RoboCop Returns to shoot another unspecified film. Supposedly MGM, RoboCop’s corporate overlords “need” to shoot RoboCop Returns “now” and Blomkamp would like to do this other thing first. And so, he is “off RoboCop”:

Can RoboCops cry? Because if they can, they are crying right now. Big, wet, manly robo-tears.

A RoboCop in the spirit and style of Paul Verhoeven’s does sound pretty fun but ... maybe someone should see if Verhoeven wants to direct it? He’s still around, still making fun, violent, vulgar thrillers. And, of course, if you want to see a Neill Blomkamp movie about a robo-man, well, there’s always Chappie.

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