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Hardware 2: Ground Zero

Status: Dead ?

Crew: Richard Stanley (Screenwriter, presumable director)

Premise: Different plot ideas have been kicked around in the course of the years. In 1996, Stanley announced in Fangoria Magazine that he had actually written a script for Hardware 2. It takes off seven years after the original film, when a MARK-13 droid is cut loose after a couple who cross the US/Mexican border. The hunt occurs in the Texas wastelands.

Richard Stanley has obliged to publish a draft of the Hardware 2 screenplay. Read it here.

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Coverage: "I pitched an idea for it based on artificial intelligence vs. insect intelligence. Some computer systems have had problems with getting genuine bugs inside them, and have had to call in people to fumigate their machines because they've had ants in them. Their bodies were conductive to electrical current, and they were actually eating the circuitry and sending out the wrong signals. So I thought of playing the insect community off against the droids in the post-holocaust wastelands of Hardware. It would have required Stacey Travis to be coated with ants, so I'm not sure it would have worked out."
[Richard Stanley in Fangoria #117, 1992.]

"I remember meeting director Richard Stanley at a screening of Army of Darkness. He commented that (after seeing the animated skeletons in the [Sam] Raimi film) he reckoned he'd be able to pull off the scenes he'd written for his new script. This script was a sequel to his movie Hardware and, in the follow up, he was going to have loads of the robots surrounding farmers in the desolate wilderness beyond the city."
[Ken MillerVIII in Script Secrets forum, September 15th, 2003.]

"[Hardware 2 has] pretty much got everything going for it. I never had any desire to do the same movie again; it needed to be something totally different, so we've ended up with a slight genre shift... [...] it's very close to being a Western." Set in Splendora, Texas, seven years after the events of the first movie, Hardware 2 begins with a Mexican family trying to cross the border at Rio Grande, but underestimating how much America has changed. "It's still a droid movie," he adds, "and we've corrected the design problems of the first one - although I don't think the ad line 'This time it's waterproof' is going to stand up to much scrunity...!"

Seriously, though, Stanley says that Hardware 2 remains "permanently stalled," partly for reasons of scale - "the first movie is basically a woman being chased around the room by an android, so in the sequel we felt we had to at least try to open it out" - but mostly because the rights to the original film remain split between the liquidators of Palace Pictures, producer Paul Trybits and Miramax, "three parties who basically don't get along. So it's a matter of getting a whole bunch of people who hate their each other around the table, which is not likely to happen." Nevertheless, he says, "I'm gonna keep campaigning for it, and not let it die - even if that means retitling it and severing its links with the original film."
[Richard Stanley in Fangoria #157, 1996.]

"The runner-up [for audience favorite award in European cinema in the FanTasia film festival] was the 1990 British film Hardware. Director Richard Stanley accepted the award, and promised to 'figure out how to get the sequel done once we extricate it from Miramax.'"
[Originally appeared in CANOE, 1998.]

"[Hardware 2] never really got into production. There are a number of reasons. The main thing is sort of two-fold. One is that the people involved in the first one turned out so badly, in later years. or some just ceased to exist. The people at Palace just went bankrupt, or split up acrimoniously. It was never made clear as to who actually owned the rights."
[Richard Stanley in Sex & Guts Magazine #3, 2001.]

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