Streaming giant Netflix has been making progress towards producing a lot of the content in house that it now streams. They recently spent over $150 million on Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman. Their next move is star stuffed and has a larger budget at $200 million. Netflix is putting big money on two proven horses, Anthony and Joe Russo, the duo behind Avengers: Endgame. The Russos will be creating their vision of the spy novel “The Gray Man”.
Now that Netflix is in the production business they are looking to create a franchise, instead of a one hit wonder and with The Gray Man, Netflix seems to be looking to its version of the The Bond Franchise. The project has already two confirmed stars headlining it, Ryan Gosling and Chris Evans. They play two very different CIA agents that go head to go head in what we hope will be an action packed blockbuster. Joe Russo penned the script which was then polished by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, the geniuses behind Avengers.
The Russo duo shot their best action in Captain America: Winter soldier. It was real, fast and not cartoony. With a tactile feel to the scene and a discrete use of CGI. Anthony Russo, in a recent interview compared the The Gray Man to winter soldier. “The movie is a real mano a mano between those two great actors who represent two different versions of the CIA, in what it can be, and what it can do. For those who were fans of Captain America: Winter Soldier, this is us moving into that territory in more of a real-world setting. That’s what this movie really means for us.”
Joe Russo added to the conversation saying “The intention is for it to be competitive with any theatrical, and the ability to do with Gosling and Evans is a dream for us. The idea is to create a franchise and build out a whole universe, with Ryan at the center of it. We have all committed to the first movie, and that’s got to be great to get us to the second movie. These are master assassins, and Gosling’s characters gets burned by the CIA and Evans’ character has to hunt him down. We have a great working relationship with Netflix, and we go back almost 20 years with Scott Stuber, we formed AGBO to be an agnostic storytelling company, where we figure out the best platform. We think Netflix is the perfect place for this film.”
The Gray Man is the Russo’s second go at working with Netflix, their last movie Extraction, was an excellent action film but was severely lacking on the plot front. The highlights were the punches and the high flying action and not much else resonated with the critics.
The movie was a massive commercial success for Netflix though. So the Russo’s got called up to bat again. This time with probably a slower build up of the story, a deeper plot spanning multiple films and the same action that the Russo’s are known for.
The Gray Man’s release is the question that has been on the tongue of everyone that has heard about it. Ideally the production will start early next year, on the action packed large scale film. The likes of which Ryan Gosling hasn’t been seen in, so that suggests that movie would have more depth than just a simple shoot em up. It’s the first movie Ryan Gosling has signed up with a potential franchise in the making. Usually the stoic brilliant actor stays away from such roles in favour of more interesting deeper roles with multiple facets and angles. Which he also excels at.
From what we’ve heard, the Russo duo have been wanting to make The Gray Man for a few years, initially Brad Pitt was supposed to start in the movie as the great James Gray. For whatever reason, it never happened. Currently the Russo’s are riding a wave of clout of their Avengers success and their names ring with the action movie watching public. With The Gray Man, it will be a sight to see with a massive $200 million budget, a star studded cast and the Russo’s penchant for real action. We can’t wait to see what they bring to the screen.