Five Fast Facts About MIMIC - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

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Five Fast Facts About MIMIC

They mimic us. We mimic them.

Released August 22nd 1997, the science fiction horror film co-written and directed by Guillermo del Toro and starring Mira Sorvino, Mimic follows entomologist Dr. Susan Tyler who genetically created an insect to kill cockroaches carrying a virulent disease. Three years later, the insects set out to destroy their only predator, mankind.

On the anniversary of its release, here are five fast facts about Mimic...

1. Having previously made his directoral debut with the 1993 Mexican independent horror drama film Cronos, Mimic marked Guillermo del Toro's first Hollywood production.

2. Mimic was originally planned as a single 30-minuite short film, based on Donald A. Wollheim's 1942 short story of the same name about insects that naturally evolved to mimic humans or man-made objects. This short film was to be part of a feature of sci-fi/horror/comedy shorts by Miramax. Once the decision was taken to expand Mimic into a full length feature, the other proposed segments also grew into the features themselves; 2001's Impostor and 2008's Alien Love Triangle.

3. Mimic features the Hollywood debut of Norman Reedus, best known as Daryl from The Walking Dead fame.

4. An alternative and more ambiguous ending for Mimic was filmed where the insects are not eradicated. Instead, Susan (Mira Sorvino), Peter (Jeremy Northam) and Chuy (Alexander Goodwin) escape the insects' hive apart from each other, and re-unite on a busy train station. However, as they hug, Chuy already notices more of the insects' signature clicking sounds, indicating that they have already started to mingle among the population.

Another ending, more in line with the original short story, was also considered and preferred by director Guillermo del Toro. Namely that the man-sized insects were the product of evolution instead of science. Del Toro envisioned a scenario where God was fed up with mankind, thus allowing the giant insects to take over as the dominant species. The film would with Susan finding the male of the colony, a creature that could change into a form that was nearly indistinguishable from a man, and it would clearly and audibly say "Leave!", showing that the insects' capabilities to mimic human appearance and sounds had become so advanced already that mankind was all but doomed.

However, production company Miramax insisted on a scientific resolution to the film instead.

5. During production of Mimic Guillermo del Toro constantly clashed with Miramax's Harvey and Bob Weinstein. The latter complained that early footage of the film wasn't scary enough, and would frequently visit the set to make unreasonable demands about what should be shot, deviating away from the script. When that did not solve the matter, Weinstein threatened to fire del Toro and replace him with another director. Going so far as halting production entirely!

Following an intervention from Mira Sorvino, Weinstein backed down, and principal photography was completed with del Toro as director in early 1997. However, the Weinsteins insisted on overseeing the final cut of the film.

Guillermo del Toro was upset with the theatrical cut as it contained many shots filmed by the second unit crew, which were inconsistent with his use of colors and camera set-up. (He did eventually re-edit a director's cut DVD release that was closer to his original vision). Since then, del Toro has never worked with the Weinsteins again, and he rarely speaks about the experience. However, in 2018, he did reveal:
"The only time I have experienced bad behaviour, and it remains one of the worst experiences of my life, was in 1997, when I did Mimic for Miramax. It was a horrible, horrible, horrible experience."

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