Directors Joe and Anthony Russo took the world by storm after directing “Captain America: Winter Soldier” in 2012. The film proved to be a huge success and is still regarded as one of the best films produced by Marvel. Since then, the duo have directed three other Marvel films, including the magnum opus “Avengers: Endgame”. Both directors have a strong connection to the Marvel world and continue to come on board as consultants for several projects. However, the duo is ready to take everyone on an exciting journey with their upcoming film “The Gray Man”.
The film once again sees the Russo brothers team up with “Captain America” star Chris Evans and superstar Ryan Gosling. Based on Mark Greaney’s novel of the same name, the Netflix film revolves around the CIA’s most skilled mercenary known as Court Gentry, who uncovers some really dark secrets about the agency he works for. As soon as he becomes a thief, his former psychopathic colleague Lloyd Hansen is called in to take down the Gentry threat by killing him. While the movie is very different from any Marvel movie made by the aforementioned filmmakers, there is still something that makes “The Gray Man” similar to Marvel movies.
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While promoting the Netflix movie, director Anthony Russo talked about their approach when making the action movie and how their past experiences with Marvel helped them craft a better narrative. In an interview with Screen Rant, Anthony also revealed that he approached “The Gray Man” with a vision of a “narrative universe” that could spawn spin-offs and a wide range of films.
“We certainly think so. We have formed [our] company, AGBO, with our partners Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely who have written all of our Marvel films, so we love to think about narrative universes. It’s in our DNA now from our work at Marvel. So most of the things we do here we think of as a narrative universe. Of course, that’s how we approach “The Gray Man”. We have many iterations of this narrative in our minds and it can have a variety of expressions, both in movies and in series, ”Russo said.
“The Gray Man” will be the duo’s most important film after “Avengers: Endgame”. Reports suggest the next Netflix movie’s production budget is around $ 200 million and features a stellar cast, including Evans, Gosling, Ana de Armas, Jessica Henwick, Dhanush, Rege-Jean Page, and Billy Bob Thornton.
It is one of the most anticipated films of the year and there is a lot at stake for the Russo brothers as well because their previous passion project, “Cherry”, turned out to be a disaster. The film, starring Tom Holland in the lead role, received mixed reviews from critics and audiences and was criticized for its story and direction. Hence, the Russo brothers will be looking forward to returning to winning with “The Gray Man” and getting another hit in their briefcase.
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It will be interesting how the film manages to create a universe that could be explored in various ways.
“The Gray Man” will premiere exclusively on Netflix on Friday 22 July.