Yeh, i know i’m a bit late to the party with this clip. First full clip of Harvey Keitel as Gene Hunt in the US remake of Life on Mars. There has been a lot of discussion over ‘why remake it, the original was brilliant’. That’s very true. It is brilliant. But then, that’s not their reason for remaking it. It’s not because they think the original was bad. In fact, as with The Office, i rather suspect it’s the total opposite. It’s the fact that the original was so good, that drove them to remaking it for a US audience.
The one thing that works against LoM when selling it abroad is its very very British! Of course, for me, that is one of the great things about it, but i can see how something like episode 5 of series 1, which was about football hooligans, being hard to relate to a US audience. British and US New York policing in the 70s were worlds apart after all. I’m not expecting the US version to be better or worse necessarily. Just different.
Now, of course that doesn’t mean the US version will be any good… It maybe rubbish (and had they stuck with the 1st pilot, i’m fairly sure it would have been). I’m prepared to give it a shot and see what the 2nd pilot is like before condemning it though. Harvey might not be entertaining as Phil’s version of the Gene genie. I somehow can’t see “this investigation is going at the speed of a spastic in a magnet factory” getting passed a mainstream US censor! However, i do think Harvey pulls off the menace pretty well (he is Harvey Keitel after all!), and he’s certainly got a 70s US cop feel about him, and that was rather the point of remaking it in the first place!