If you’re like me, you know there’s only one thing that really matters when it comes to rebooting Lost in Space, and that’s nailing the casting for the villainous Dr. Smith. Sure, the basic premise holds a lot of promise. The Robinson family is sent on a colonization mission to space. They’re knocked off course and crash somewhere unexpected. They struggle to survive. It worked for the classic 1960s TV show, and held true through that terrible/amazing 90s film remake. You’ve got scientists and kids and danger and space, plus plenty of environmental and/or political themes to update and explore within that framework. The concept is evergreen.
But none of it works without Dr. Smith. The 1998 movie had the cast and the budget to be great (I mean, who doesn’t want to see the boiling sexual chemistry between Heather Graham and Matt LeBlanc?!), only it wasn’t. The only redeeming quality was the conviction with which Gary Oldman performed as the evil scientist hell-bent on sabotaging the mission… even when he turned into a weird spider-thing. You, uh, kinda had to be there.
Point is, Netflix just released the first trailer for their upcoming version of Lost in Space, and Dr. Smith is mysteriously missing… which is a shame, because apparently the character is being played by the always amazing Parker Posey this time around!
And here is the official description, per Entertainment Weekly:
“Set 30 years in the future, colonization in space is now a reality, and the Robinson family is among those tested and selected to make a new life for themselves in a better world. But when the new colonists find themselves abruptly torn off course en route to their new home they must forge new alliances and work together to survive in a dangerous alien environment, light-years from their original destination. Stranded along with the Robinsons are two outsiders who find themselves thrown together by circumstance and a mutual knack for deception. The unsettlingly charismatic Dr. Smith (Posey) is a master manipulator with an inscrutable end game. And the roguish, but inadvertently charming Don West (Ignacio Serricchio) is a highly-skilled, blue-collar contractor, who had no intention of joining the colony, let alone crash landing on a lost planet.”
The series also stars Black Sails’ Toby Stephens as John Robinson, House of Cards’ Molly Parker as Maureen Robinson, and Bones’s Ignacio Serricchio as Don West. Taylor Russell, Mina Sundwall, and Max Jenkins will play the Robinson kids Judy, Penny, and Will respectively. Lost in Space premieres on Netflix April 13th.