Detroit RoboCop statue's final form to be 'unveiled later this winter'

Kim Kozlowski
The Detroit News

Detroit — Almost a decade after the idea turned into a reality, the statue of Detroit's favorite science fiction legend, RoboCop, appears to be nearing final assembly ahead of a debut at the Michigan Science Center.

On Tuesday, organizers of the Kickstarter campaign website who crowdfunded the larger-than-life-sized RoboCop for the city posted a few teaser photos of the statue with a note that its final form is coming "later this winter."

Giorgio Gikas, president of Venus Bronze Works, with the RoboCop head and another body part.

"With his head on, he is 11’ tall," organizers wrote in the update. "The stainless steel base he is on weighs half a ton by itself. He is big, he is clean, he is bronze, he is perfect."

RoboCop is the star of a 1987 film that is set in Detroit. The film spawned a television series, a video game, comic book and more.

The genesis of the RoboCop statue for Detroit began in 2011 with a single tweet.

A man sent a tweet to then-Mayor Dave Bing who noted that Philadelphia has a statue of Rocky and RoboCop would be a "GREAT ambassador for Detroit.”

Bing tweeted back, saying there were no plans in Detroit for a statue of RoboCop.

But Detroiters Brandon Walley, a filmmaker, and Jerry Paffendorf, co-founder and CEO at Loveland Technologies, ran with the idea, envisioning it as a tourist attraction.

A  Kickstarter campaign launched in 2012 raised $67,436 from more than 2,700 backers worldwide. Since then, Giorgio Gikas, one of Detroit’s premier sculptor conservators, has been creating the sculpture. 

While the statue was expected to be unveiled last summer, organizers instead announced RoboCop's home would be at the Michigan Science Center, instead of the previously announced location at Wayne State University's TechTown urban research and technology business park. 

This week, organizers say the next time RoboCop is seen, he will have a dark gray patina. 

"This is as much detail as we can share for now as control of the statue is being fully handed off," organizers wrote. "We’re working hard to help get him outdoors and installed so you can finally pay him a visit.

"You will find that the scale and quality of craftsmanship were worth the wait."