Roland Emmerich Wants Brent Spiner Back for ‘ID Forever’; Talks Superhero Film ‘Singularity’

Published 2 years ago by , Updated July 1st, 2013 at 2:18 pm,

Set photo of Roland Emmerich Roland Emmerich Wants Brent Spiner Back for ID Forever; Talks Superhero Film Singularity

The invading alien army might have been temporarily delayed due to their regretful decision not to update their antivirus software, but you can’t keep them away for long. Roland Emmerich’s sequel to his 1996 blockbuster success Independence Day, currently titled ID Forever Part 1, will be out in theaters a little over two years from now, and the director is already organizing the next big disaster.

Emmerich has previously revealed that, by the time the plot of ID Forever Part 1 begins, the movie universe will have been heavily diverted along a tangent from our own. Not only have the people of Earth had access to several hundred square miles of alien technology – and twenty years within which to study it and reproduce it – they have also been given sufficient motivation to ready themselves for another fight. Needless to say, when the next wave of aliens arrive (twenty years in our time being roughly equal to two or three weeks of theirs, thanks to wormhole travel) they’ll find themselves up against a lot more resistance.

With the time until the start of production on ID Forever Part 1 slowly closing in, and details of both casting and plot beginning to solidify, Emmerich spoke on GEEKTIME! Radio about his plans for the disaster movie sequel. Independence Day was originally going to be re-released in 3D (under the slightly confusing abbreviation ID43D), but Twentieth Century Fox later scrapped those plans.

Emmerich says that he’s not too cut up about the decision:

“I’m not a fan of 3D and re-releasing movies in 3D. I think that people will get tired of it… I wouldn’t [shoot a movie in 3D] because it’s very cumbersome and it’s this huge rig and you have this advisor next to you, and you have to tell them how much 3D you want to have, and I don’t want to think about that. I want to think about what this actor is doing, and it would only bother me.”

Will Smith in Independence Day Roland Emmerich Wants Brent Spiner Back for ID Forever; Talks Superhero Film Singularity

When asked about casting for ID Forever Part 1, Emmerich reaffirmed the recent news that both Jeff Goldblum and Bill Pullman will be back, and also commented on the fact that Will Smith will not be returning for a significant role. In the past, he’s said that this was due to a combination of factors – both the fact that Smith is no longer affordable, and also because he is now a “marquee name” and would therefore no longer work as a single gear in the customary Emmerich cast of thousands. The director is keeping a cameo space open for Smith, but says that anything more than that would lead to him taking up too much space:

“It would be a Will Smith film, not Independence Day. I would love to have him in a small part, if he wants, but he’s overpowering.”

Emmerich also adds that he doesn’t think Smith would be comfortable in the role anymore, since back in the mid-nineties he was a “carefree dude who just did it,” and now his stardom would most likely get in the way of him playing the character in the same way that he did in 1996. Two actors that Emmerich does definitely want to bring back, however, are Judd Hirsch (who played Julius Levinson, the father of Goldblum’s character) and Brent Spiner (Dr. Brackish Okun AKA the mouthpiece of the alien horde). While Hirsch would be easy enough to include, bringing Spiner back would be a bit more surprising – given the fate of his character in the original film.

Judd Hirsch and Brent Spiner in Independence Day Roland Emmerich Wants Brent Spiner Back for ID Forever; Talks Superhero Film Singularity

The conversation came around to the topic of superhero movies, since comic book adaptations are currently the hottest genre in mainstream cinema. Emmerich has been rumored to direct various comic book movies in the past, but responded to the rumors by saying that he always turns down such offers as he finds comic book movies “boring” and “unimaginative.” Though he is currently planning to direct an original superhero movie, a sci-fi collaboration with screenwriter Harald Kloser (2012, 10,000 B.C.) called Singularity, he says that his stance on comic book adaptations hasn’t changed:

“I always say no to superheroes. I come from Germany, and as a kid I didn’t read any comic books… I read good literature. You Americans, you have a certain affinity for it. But I am interested in creating my own superhero, which is this project Singularity that I want to do… It will be a realistic-based hero, who because of what is the next step of evolution, becomes a superhero.”

A movie about superheroes emerging naturally from the next stage of human evolution? It’s such a great idea, you have to wonder why no one has thought of it before now (unless you count the X-Men series, among countless others).

independence day ship Roland Emmerich Wants Brent Spiner Back for ID Forever; Talks Superhero Film Singularity

Based on the way he is characterizing it so far, it sounds like ID Forever Part 1 will be in a similar vein to the first film, with the emphasis not really placed upon any single character but instead on the “new generation” of young people who have grown up with the knowledge of the invasion, even if they don’t remember it too well or were perhaps born after it occurred. It will be interesting to see what the alternate timeline after the events of the 1996 movie looks like, and how far advanced the civilization of the ‘Independence Day Universe 2015′ will be compared to our own.

Do you like what you’ve heard about ID Forever Part 1 and Singularity so far, or do you think that Emmerich is going in the wrong direction? Share your thoughts in the comments.


Independence Day 2 is out in theaters on July 3, 2015.

Source: GEEKTIME! Radio

Follow H. Shaw-Williams on Twitter @HSW3K
Get our free email alerts on the topics and author of this article:


Post a Comment

GravatarWant to change your avatar?
Go to and upload your own (we'll wait)!

 Rules: No profanity or personal attacks.
 Use a valid email address or risk being banned from commenting.

If your comment doesn't show up immediately, it may have been flagged for moderation. Please try refreshing the page first, then drop us a note and we'll retrieve it. Keep in mind that we do not allow external links in the comments.

  1. “as a kid I didn’t read any comic books… I read good literature.”

    I read the finest literature as a kid and still do. I also read comics.
    Mr. Emmerich comes off condescending here. I’d say he doesn’t get it.

    • +1

      Because his movies are such great narratives that could be compared to fine literature.

      • Ha, very true, Aaron.

    • +1

    • Agreed. And his singularity idea completely goes along the X-Men story line. He obviously doesn’t understand that superheroes are the modern Mytholgy. Greece and Rome had theirs for their time. We have Superman and Thor, Batman, and so many more.

    • Well said.

    • + 1

      Although, I am still excited and looking forward to this movie, and hopefully more sequels.

    • Exactly, Robert.

    • I thought he sounded like a jerk. “I read good literature” so he is now the leading voice in what is good literature? or should I say he knew what was good literature as a child more so than everyone else in the whole damn world? That statement he made is simply stunning.
      If he just said, ” I find the stories in comic books boring” and left it at that he would have been in a better light than this leaves him looking here.
      Does he ‘get it’ as they ask here? well I do know one thing, he sounds like a prick to me, but all that said you can’t argue with results.
      Maybe he is a Condescending prick, but being a prick does not mean you can’t make good movies.
      From what I read I like the idea of making a movie with kids who had to grow up with the knowledge of the attack as a center point. More humanistic stories are better than more explosions imo.

      • Luckily they grew up learning that America is the only competent country in the world and all the other countries need the USA to guide them by the hand to do anything right, wow they dodged a bullet there! They might have had to learn some kind of lesson on how the world coming together as one is better then everyone believing their the best and going at it alone

  2. Greetings! Friends

    I believe this should be a very good movie which should equally be successful as the first film. I look forward to the next chapter in the Independence Day storyline.

    Peace be unto you!
    Marquest Burton

  3. Are you really sure that ID2 is out on Wednesday?

    • Hahaha #SomeoneFatFingeredTheDate

  4. Emmerich is a fool. 3D would only “bother him.” Watch Hugo and see what a real director does with it…and observe fine acting and storytelling in the process. His latest film: White House Down is so terribly miscast by “name” actors, not to mention the story was just told in a superior way (Olympus Has Fallen.)

    Will Smith was undoubtedly offered a starring role in ID Forever Part 1 (classy name…not) and he must have turned it down. Although it isn’t as if Smith is making better films. Goldblum, Hirsch and Spiner are all B actors who will work for scale–what a surprise that they will be returning…in Spiner’s case from beyond his character’s grave.

    This will be a fun film to Netflix.

    • Wow you’re negative.

  5. Emmerich becomes less interesting with every movie he makes. This interview does little to improve his standing.

  6. What an ass lol

  7. Roland need to get off of his high horse. People can read good literature AND comic books. Furthermore, some might even seem certain comic books as good literature.

    • “some might even seem certain comic books as good literature.”

      How illiterate would someone have to be to think Marvel/DC comics are good literature?

        • I’m well aware of the niche market for avant-garde comics like Maus or Blankets. That’s not what Emmerich was talking about. It’s clear from context that he was discussing the Marvel/DC pulp superhero comics.

      • See Reading’s post.

  8. “I always say no to superheroes. I come from Germany…” ~ Emmerich


    Now we know why he likes blowing up the United States in movies.

    • Explain Micheal Bay then

  9. Independence Day 2 comes out July 3 2013? I missed that

  10. Epic typo at the end lol.

  11. Reading good literature clearly has not translated into him being able to tell a good story.

  12. I can tell that all of the “good literature” he grew up reading inspired his story-telling skills.

  13. Not sure f he was the rght guy for this project or not. I have my doubts. We will see as ID moves forward and takes shape.

  14. Including Brent Spiner wouldnt be a plot problem , as when has Emmerich ever bothered with something so meaningless as a plot (case in point, White House Down!). ID4 was entertaining, but this guy is a complete hack with the advantage of a huge budget and great special effects dept. He is a terrible director. Not Michael Bay terrible, but close. Go see a Christopher Nolan, Edward Zwick, Martin Scorcese, Ridley Scott film, to see a real movie director, and actual character development.

  15. Oh the irony of the man who made Day After Tomorrow and 2012 calling comic book movies “boring” and “unimaginative”. Also his idea for a superhero sounds completely original, a real subversive take on the whole genre.

    Man, I’m not even a comic book fan, but this is a prime example of the pot calling the kettle black.

  16. The studio would be insane to green light a pair of sequels to Independence Day without the original films breakout star, Big Willie Style. It’d be like doing a Lethal Weapon movie without either Riggs or Murtaugh or MIB IV sans Smith or Jones…

    It’s all we’ll talk about if the movie tanks. We loved the chemistry between Jeff Goldblum whenever he interacted with Smith and Bill Pullman, and the movie will suffer without all three of those men sharing screen time together.

    Make Steven Hiller POTUS this time out and former President Whitmore and David Levinson the only two men in the world he can trust.

    • all those movies gave one person a leading role. independence day was not so single actor centric as that. Plus they will green light anything they think they can get cash out of. I mean they green lite After Earth so . . .

  17. Everyone is getting upset mainly because he dissed comic books. So what? I love comic books, but I understand that not everyone does. No biggie. Lets focus on the movie…

    Independence Day was a great popcorn flick: it didn’t take itself too seriously and it was great mindless entertainment. When I heard about the sequels I thought it sounded like a bad idea but the more I hear, the more I think they can pull it off. They’ve had enough time to sit down and think about the plot, unlike many other directors/studios who start working on sequels before the first movie is even released.

    Will Smith isn’t really integral to the storyline either. He was great in the first one, but he was just a pilot. Goldblum was a tech guy. Which one do you think is gonna be working more for 20 years after finding and reverse engineering heaps of alien technology?

    I dunno, that’s just my opinion. I’m not saying it will be brilliant, or even good, but let’s just wait and see…

    • I don’t think it was so much dissing comic books as it was calling us uncultured for reading them

  18. You Germans, of course they do not believe in superheroes… only a super race!

  19. Saying “He’s from Germany” like Germans don’t mess with comic books is plain stupid. I was born in Nigeria, As a kid, I never cared for reading, until my elder brother introduced me to his comic books. I started off with just the photos and later graduated to the words, then reading cartoons in newspapers, then reading the actual newspaper itself. Comic books opened me to the world of reading. So to see Emmerich say this is just sad. Now if Emmerich made thought provoking movies and wasn’t always interested in destruction, I could have said well he got a point on good literature. Wish him the best with his ID2 part1 and Singularity projects.

    • I’m really curious, what comics did you read in Nigeria as a kid? Were they imports or reprints of American and European comics, or were there also original, Nigerian publications?

      • Back then in the city of Jos, There were DC, Marvel and some other brands (I can’t remember the name of the companies behind them) comic books at major stores, Dredd, Tintin, Asterix, British soccer comics etc……… we used to go this store every Sunday. My brother had more than 70 comics at one time (95% got stolen when we moved). Later with the economic downturn from the late 80′s comics became a huge luxury and only the wealthy could afford them.

      • Also there were a few Nigerian publications available back then, most of them died during the 90′s. As at 2005 I don’t recall seeing any Nigerian publication on the streets, the ones that exist are cartoons in newspapers such Captain Africa.

  20. I thought he said a couple years ago that he wasn’t interested in making sequels to any of his earlier movies? Oh boy…

  21. ” Hello boys!! I’m bbaaaaaaaacckk !!! “