Why Mr. Robot's Sam Esmail Is The Perfect Fit For Apple's Metropolis Series

Sam Esmail's Metropolis has gotten a series order at Apple TV+, here's why the Mr. Robot showrunner is the perfect fit for a new adaptation of Fritz Lang's sci-fi classic. Mr. Robot began airing in 2015 and lasted for four seasons. The show received widespread critical acclaim, with viewers praising Esmail's distinctive visual style and the elaborate twists and turns of the show's story. Sam Esmail's Mr. Robot went on to garner a number of awards, including two Golden Globes, and three Primetime Emmys.

Esmail announced he was interested in remaking Metropolis as a mini-series back in 2016. Metropolis, directed by German filmmaker Fitz Lang, was released in 1927 and has since become a classic of cinematic science-fiction. Often considered one of the first science-fiction films, Metropolis has influenced such franchises as Star Wars and Blade RunnerMetropolis is defined by its German expressionist art design, pioneering special effects, and political message, thus, a modern adaptation would have to find a way to update the film's subject matter and aesthetic for a modern audience.

Related: Mr Robot Creator's New Show Metropolis Gets Series Order

Sam Esmail is the perfect fit for this project due to the similarities between Mr. Robot and Metropolis. Indeed, although Mr. Robot is not overtly a science-fiction work, it does contain some mysterious and philosophical concepts that step over the line of realism. Whiterose's plan, in particular, while never fully achieved, seemed to allude to time travel or some kind of science fiction-esque device. Of course, Mr. Robot also focuses heavily on the threat of technology and how powerful corporations use it.

This political theme is the main commonality between Metropolis and Mr. Robot. The dystopian world of Metropolis is divided into the lower depths and the overworld. Below the surface, workers toil away, working giant machines, while business magnates and industrialists live a leisurely existence in the skyscrapers above. The film portrays a worker uprising that results in a more humane relationship between the rich and the poor. Mr. Robot similarly explores economic divides; it is the main characters' explicit goal to redistribute the wealth of E Corp. In this sense, Metropolis' overt dystopia is simply a more exaggerated version of the capitalist world as portrayed in Mr. Robot.

While these thematic concerns explain why Sam Esmail would be interested in remaking Fritz Lang's classic, it is his role as a director that confirms the miniseries will be a worthy adaptation. What initially caught the eye of critics and viewers alike was Mr. Robot's unique cinematography. Starting from season 2, Sam Esmail directed every episode of the show himself, as well as serving as showrunner, indicating that the techno-thriller's distinct aesthetic is definitely Esmail's touch. He would subsequently continue his formal experimentations with Amazon Prime's Homecoming, which premiered in 2018. All of this goes to show that if there's anyone currently working in television who would be prepared to give Metropolis' sci-fi dystopia the visual flair it deserves, it would probably be Sam Esmail.

However, one hurdle remains for Sam Esmail as he tackles Metropolis. It remains to be seen whether Sam Esmail will be able to transfer his talents from the relatively small budget psychological thrillers, Mr. Robot and Homecoming, to the bigger production values that the Metropolis series would require. Given Esmail's willingness to experiment with the medium, he should be the perfect fit for this kind of project, as long as he's given enough creative freedom.

More: Mr. Robot: Every Major Plot Twist, Ranked



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