‘thE NEw iN­tER­PRE­ta­tioN haS to bE SCaRiER thaN thE oLD fiLM’

Niels Ar­DeN Oplev

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he’s a great di­rec­tor,” shrugs Oplev. “In the theatre world, peo­ple do new in­ter­pre­ta­tions over and over again. Why is it so con­tro­ver­sial in film?”

Cer­tainly Oplev’s re­la­tion­ship with Lis­beth Sa­lan­der fed into his Flatliners, with Page’s char­ac­ter be­ing the one to in­sti­gate the ex­per­i­ments. “I’m good with strong fe­male char­ac­ters,” he says. In­deed, his ver­sion has seen a gen­der switch-around. “One rea­son I said ‘yes’ was it was fe­male driven – three girls, two guys,” he states. “In the old film, it was four guys, one girl.”

Op­po­site Page is Kiersey Cle­mons (Dope) and Nina Do­brev (The Vam­pire Diaries), Brit ac­tor James Nor­ton (Happy Val­ley) and Rogue One’s Diego Luna. Oplev was also keen to turn their reprises his role of Dr. Nel­son Wright in a cameo. “It’s an homage to the old film,” says Oplev, ad­mit­ting the cast­ing did “cre­ate con­fu­sion” as to what this Flatliners is. A se­quel? A re­make? “Well that’s a dif­fi­cult ques­tion. Kiefer is in both films, so what does that make it?”

De­spite Suther­land, this ver­sion is clearly a re­boot. For Oplev, who pre­vi­ously di­rected the pi­lot of Mr. Ro­bot, it was the chance to put his stamp on a Hol­ly­wood movie. “I think most of the projects stu­dios make are not so di­men­sional,” he says. “But if I’m ever go­ing to do a stu­dio film, this would prob­a­bly be it.”

ETA | 29 SEPTEM­BER / FLATLINERS OPENS NEXT MONTH.

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