Learn How ‘Robocop’ Inspired ‘Mars Express’ in Exclusive New Featurette | Video

Something’s afoot (on Mars!)

“Mars Express” is almost here.

The new French animated feature is being released domestically by GKids, in both the original French version and a strong English dub. Ahead of the release, we are thrilled to debut a new behind-the-scenes clip where director Jérémie Périn discusses the influence of Paul Verhoeven’s 1987 masterpiece “RoboCop” on the new movie. You can watch Périn speak in the video above.

“We wanted to have a couple, male and female, and doing that without any romance between them, just friendship. It’s rare in fiction. And we wanted to try that. We built Carlos, in a way, the contrary to Alex Murphy in ‘RoboCop,’” Périn said in the clip. “There are some similarities – RoboCop and Carlos have a history with their famil,y but during the movie, his arc is different. RoboCop, in the end, is finding his own humanity. In ‘Mars Express,’ he is accepting his artificial identity as a new way of living.”

“Mars Express” follows a private investigator named Aline Ruby (voiced by Léa Drucker) and her android companion, the aforementioned Carlos Rivera (Daniel Njo Lobé) as they investigate the disappearance of two young women on Mars. The movie, which premiered at Cannes last year and played at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival shortly after, is gorgeously animated.

It imagines a 23rd century as designed completely by Ron Cobb, with big chunky spaceships regularly traveling between Mars and Earth. It’s a politically fraught future, as well, following a human massacre at the hands of AI. (Ruby was there.) A hardboiled detective story as well as a cautionary sci-fi fable, “Mars Express” does it all.

“Mars Express,” in both its original French and in an English dub, will be released by GKids this Friday, May 3.

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