NEW YORK — Despite having already stepped into a screen role originated by Michael Caine for the 2004 “Alfie” remake, Jude Law made it clear at Tuesday’s “Sleuth” preem that he is not trying to copy the thesp’s career.

“It looks like I have some type of obsession to be considered the new Michael Caine, which of course I don’t. There is only one, and I’m not stupid enough to imagine I would be an alternative,” Law said.

The actor, who also produced the pic, said, “There wasn’t a great desire in me to remake the (1972) movie. It really wasn’t until I met (the film’s screenwriter) Harold Pinter for lunch, and he loved the idea, that I suddenly felt a responsibility to support his process. So for 2½ years I read, he wrote.”

Director Kenneth Branagh admitted that he had seen the original but said he made sure to keep it out of his DVD player while helming the pic.

“I didn’t see it again in preparation for this one because I wanted to start with a clean slate,” Branagh said.