We're now just a little more than two weeks away from the release of Flatliners, the sequel/reboot of Joel Schumacher's cult classic 1990 film about a group of medical students trying to find evidence of the afterlife.
The new film looks appropriately creepy so far, and even packs a few hints of lightheartedness into its trailers. What it hasn't shown us much of yet is just how much it may connect to the original film (you know, aside from the title and the concept).
The answers might lie in Kiefer Sutherland.
Sutherland, who stars in the original film as Nelson Wright, will make an appearance in the new version of Flatliners, and while we still don't know how prominent his role will be, the latest TV spot for the flick finally gives us a peek at him.
It's a blink-and-you-miss it moment, but there's Sutherland in a lab coat standing next to brain scans, looking quite serious. So why's it so interesting that we're finally seeing him? Because Sutherland might be what makes this film more of a sequel than a reboot. Apparently he's not just playing a medical professor. He's playing Dr. Nelson Wright, his character from the original film. This has been largely unconfirmed by the production, but Sutherland is now listed as "Nelson" on the film's IMDb page, and last year he basically spilled the beans in an interview with Metro.
"I play a professor at the medical university. It is never stated but it will probably be very clearly understood that I’m the same character I was in the original Flatliners but that I have changed my name and I’ve done some things to move on from the experiments that we were doing in the original film."
It's hard to tell what Sutherland means by "probably be very clear," especially if the film never comes right out and says who he really is. Does he simply observe the students in their experiments? Does it all come back to haunt him? Is his role larger than we thought? It's looking more and more like these are questions we might not get answer to until we see the new film.
Flatliners hits theaters September 29.