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Is it cold in here or is it just me?
~ Simon Phoenix's most famous quote.
Raymond Cocteau: I hadn't counted on this, but I must say you've worked out beautifully. People are terrified of you.
Simon Phoenix: What's new? People have always been terrified of me.
~ Simon Phoenix talking to Raymond Cocteau.

Simon Phoenix is the main antagonist of the 1993 sci-fi action film Demolition Man. He is the most crazed and dangerous psychopathic criminal of the 20th century, and only the toughest cop could be a match for him. He is John Spartan's arch-nemesis.

He was portrayed by Wesley Snipes who also played Nino Brown.


Phoenix was a wanted psychopathic criminal responsible for many crimes like theft, kidnapping, robbery, and murder. He declared his own kingdom in South Central within Los Angeles, having all other street gangs, drug dealers and even some murderers under his control.

In his last crime in 1996, he made 30 people hostage for trespassing at his building, but when his arch-enemy, LAPD officer Detective John Spartan interfered, he set alight tanks of C4 and after a brief fight with Spartan, he was captured and taken away before the building was blown to pieces.

Meanwhile, other cops have found the corpses of the hostages with Phoenix being found guilty of the murders and condemned. But he framed Spartan for not caring about the hostages and as a result of John too was wrongly accused of killing the civilians, and the two were instead frozen in a cryogenic chamber, remaining there for years.

36 years later, society has changed drastically, with San Diego, Santa Barbara, and Los Angeles being merged in one large so-called utopia named San Angeles. Phoenix was released from his confinement with a rehabilitation program that gave him astounding new skills and extra strength to help him adapt to the future.

The reason for his programming was to kill Edgar Friendly, the leader of the resistance group called Scraps who lived in the sewers of San Angeles since the society of Dr. Raymond Cocteau first established. Phoenix reassembles a new gang of not only the hardened residents of the sewers but also half a dozen defrosted, bloodthirsty criminals of the 20th century he requested released from the cryo-prison and decides to kill Cocteau who released him, setting on his own goals to spread chaos again. 

Simon Phoenix (in a scene cut out from the film to shorten running time) shoots and kills Spartan's old friend Zachary Lamb just when Lenina Huxley and John Spartan go after him on the roads of San Angeles. He was pursued by Sgt. John Spartan of the old LAPD once again. During a car chase, Phoenix admits that the hostages Spartan tried to save in 1996 were already dead before he even arrived, meaning that Spartan was sent into rehabilitation for no reason.

With the help of Edgar Friendly and Lt. Lenina Huxley of the SAPD along with the armed Scraps, Spartan breaks into the facility and fights Phoenix, who uses his futuristic skills to his advantage. According to what was cut out, John Spartan kills newer henchmen to Simon Phoenix and battles the goon played by Jesse “The Body” Ventura named Adam who did the work for Phoenix in killing Raymond Cocteau and defeats Adam just before going up against Simon Phoenix one last time.

During an intense battle, Spartan smashes a container of the potent cryogenic liquid against the floor and leaps to grab a malfunctioning crane arm overhead, as the floor and everything in contact with it freezes solid, including Phoenix. Spartan then kicks Phoenix's frozen head off after shouting "Heads up!", reminiscing Simon's predictable loss of his head, and it hits the ground before smashing to pieces, avenging himself and all the people Phoenix killed.

The damaged equipment in the room then explodes, with Spartan escaping just before the cryo-prison is destroyed, along with Phoenix's decapitated frozen body and the criminals he attempted to set free, ending his reign of chaos forever.

Videogame Appearances

Simon Phoenix appears in all the videogame adaptions of Demolition Man on Sega Genesis, Sega CD, Super Nintendo Entertainment System and 3do where he serves as the game's main antagonist and the final boss.


Simon Phoenix is an African-American man with an athletic and muscular build, shaven blonde curly hair, and a small black beard. He has heterochromia, his right eye is brown, and his left eye is blue. Both of his ears are pierced with silver looped earrings, two on the right, one on the left. In 1996, he wore a black leather jacket with red lining and a black and yellow checker pattern on the back, a gray shirt, and black and white striped trousers. In 2032, he now wears blue dungarees bearing the cryo-prison logo on the chest with an orange vest with a silver stripe underneath and later wore grey underground combat fatigues.


Edgar Friendly: They thawed this guy out just to kill me? I'm flattered.
John Spartan: Don't be flattered, be frightened. This guy's a certifiable nightmare.
~ John Spartan telling Edgar Friendly how deadly Simon Phoenix is.

Simon Phoenix has a personality way beyond that of a nutcase, he is a ruthless and sick-minded anarchist with no other aims than torturing, killing, committing mayhem and driving the society around him into chaos for his own sadistic pleasure. Phoenix also loves playing tricks to others, though his tricks are usually incredibly cruel and cause the deaths of dozens of people. 

Though impulsive, maniacal, bloodthirsty and barbaric, Phoenix can be highly intelligent, collected, opportunistic, manipulative, polite and even charming if that could work in his favor, as seen when he speaks with Raymond Cocteau. Phoenix also acknowledges that he is completely evil, but does not seem bothered and instead enjoys it.

He is also a very humorous man, and seems to not take his atrocious acts or his fight against Spartan very seriously (much like the Joker) - though, at the end of the movie, Phoenix gets frustrated by Spartan's relentless pursuit and escaping his attacks, resulting in him losing his coolness and revealing the monster within, as an incredibly wrathful, narcissistic, shameless and remorseless psychopath.

He had a reason, though, to criticize Cocteau's society, saying that he can't remove people's free will. He affirmed this, however, only for his selfish purposes, as he wants total chaos rather than an extreme lawful society.


Arrest? S**t. And you're trespassing.
~ Simon Phoenix
Oh, yes, the passengers. Well, they're... F**k you. The passengers are gone. Ha ha ha ha. See, I told the city, "Look, nobody comes down here." Postmen figured it out... ...policemen figured it out. But the ***damn bus drivers just wouldn't listen.
~ Simon Phoenix to John Spartan.
What? What? Whatcha got, soldier boy? Do something. Go ahead. You're up to your ass in gasoline. I'll set yo' ass on fire.
~ Simon Phoenix to John Spartan.
Now, where did I put 'em? I swear, I'd lose my head if it wasn't attached.
~ Simon Phoenix to John Spartan.
Wrong again!
~ Simon Phoenix
You see that, Captain? I told him! He said he didn't care! How could you sacrifice all those innocent people for little ol' me! What kind of man are you?
~ Simon Phoenix taunting John Spartan about the deaths of 30 municipal bus passengers while he is under police custody.
We'll spend a lot of quality time together. See ya, sweetie! Honey! Sugar!
~ Simon Phoenix
Hace veintinueve años el sistema de libertad condicional, como lo...
~ Simon Phoenix mimicking Warden William Smithers in Spanish.
...was rendered obsoleto.
~ Simon Phoenix mimicking Warden William Smithers in both English and Spanish.
Estatuto Cinco treinta y siete guión Veintinueve...
~ Simon Phoenix mimicking Warden William Smithers again in Spanish.
Yeah. I do. Teddy bear.
~ Simon Phoenix, secretly activating the password "Teddy Bear" to the electronic cuffs before attacking Warden William Smithers and the CryoPrison guards.
I wish I knew.
~ Simon Phoenix
Simon says, "Die."
~ Simon Phoenix
Yoo-hoo! Warden... ...Let's get this over quickly.
~ Simon Phoenix, before ending his CryoPrison parole hearing with the sadistic killing of Warden William Smithers.
Yeah, you too.
~ Simon Phoenix
Get outta here!
~ Simon Phoenix
Damn, I'm possessed! Wonder if I can play the accordion too. Ha-ha-ha.
~ Simon Phoenix
Look, I don't need a history lesson. Come on, HAL! Where are the ***damn guns?
~ Simon Phoenix
What? F**k you.
Yeah, right. [Police show up] F**kers are fast, too. [Morality Box buzzes again and Phoenix mocks it, throwing away the ticket] Beep!
~ Simon Phoenix
What's this? Six of you. Such nice, tidy uniforms. Oh I'm so scared! What you guys don't have sarcasm anymore?
~ Simon Phoenix to 6 San Angeles police officers.
Lucky number seven.
~ Simon Phoenix, activating the Anti-Graffiti Activation Program which killed a nearby standing 7th SAPD officer.
~ Simon Phoenix
Hey! Wait for me!
~ Simon Phoenix, after both beating up and killing 7 SAPD officers with ease.
Simon says: everybody sing!
~ Simon Phoenix
♪And the home of the brave♪♪ Play ball!
~ Simon Phoenix
Home, sweet home. Whoa.
~ Simon Phoenix at the San Angeles Museum of History.
Wait a minute. This is the future. Where are all the phaser guns?
~ Simon Phoenix
The museum is no longer sealed, is it? Ha-ha! What can I say? I'm a blast from the past!
~ Simon Phoenix
Oh, boy, that voice sounds familiar. Who is that?!
~ Simon Phoenix begining to open fire, forcing as John Spartan takes cover.
Spartan? John Spartan? Aw s**t, they let anybody into this century! What the hell you doing here?
~ Simon Phoenix to John Spartan.
Simon says bleed!
~ Simon Phoenix
C'mon, you space-age piece of s**t.
~ Simon Phoenix mutters to the AcMAG gun acquired.
So let me get this right: They defrosted you just so you could lasso my piddly ass? Damn, you been had! I've been dreamin' about killin' you for 40 years.
~ Simon Phoenix to John Spartan.
The past is over, John! It's time for something new and improved!
~ Simon Phoenix to John Spartan.
I took care of Spartan once and I'll take care of him again.
~ Phoenix vowing to rid himself of Spartan.
All right, gentlemen, let's review. The year is 2032 - that's two-zero-three-two, as in the 21st Century - and I am sorry to say the world has become a pussy-whipped, Brady Bunch version of itself, run by a bunch of robed sissies. All we have to do to run the whole thing, is to kill a man named Raymond, who put it all together. Ah, but there's an extra added bonus. We get to kill the man who put most of us behind the freezer.
~ Simon Phoenix to his gang of fellow free CryoCons from the 20th century on his plans of reintroducing criminality to the future world as well to kill both Dr. Raymond Cocteau and John Spartan.
I want you to loot, pillage, plunder! I want ya to steal! I want you to do all the wonderful things that we used to do before all this happened. This world will be ours! Let's bring back the good old days! Are you with me?! ARE YOU WITH ME?! LET'S DO IT!
~ Simon Phoenix to his fellow criminals of the 20th century.
Will you please kill him? He's p***in' me off!
~ Simon Phoenix telling one of his men to kill Dr. Cocteau.
"S**t! ***damn! What am I doing wrong?
~ Phoenix getting frustrated at not being able to kill Spartan.
This is the best day of my life!
~ Phoenix's last words as he is about to finish Spartan.





  • Phoenix's last name simply came from the mythological firebird of Egyptian legend which indicated the legendary criminal's desire to bring back greed, cruelty, and anarchy into the world, including the seemingly serene city of San Angeles and make all the chaotic madness last forever.
  • Phoenix has two different colored eyes. A condition called heterochromia iridis.
  • Sylvester Stallone wanted Jackie Chan to play the part of Simon Phoenix, Chan declined, since Asian audiences don't like the idea of actors who have always played heroes suddenly playing evil characters.
  • During rehearsals, Wesley Snipes starting reciting his lines in Spanish, and they thought it was funny.
  • Wesley Snipes' kicks and punches sometimes look lurchy and awkward. Snipes is an accomplished black belt in real life, and his kicks and punches were so fast that they blurred on-camera. Hence the producers asked him to slow them down.
  • According to the commentary found on the Region 1 DVD, there were some scenes deleted from the movie including a subplot involving the murder of Zachary Lamb by Phoenix.
  • Wesley Snipes hated his blond dye job, and shaved his head as soon as filming was complete. After this movie's release, professional NBA player Dennis Rodman began dying his hair different colors, a look that was inspired by Simon Phoenix.
  • Sir Nigel Hawthorne (who plays Raymond Cocteau in the movie) didn't get along with Wesley Snipes during filming.
  • According to Denis Leary, Snipes insisted on doing his own action scenes. After Snipes finished his scenes, the crew would film scenes with the stunt people.
  • Wesley Snipes later worked with Sylvester Stallone again in The Expendables 3, where they play allies instead of enemies.
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