Netflix’s latest earnings report showed it has added more than 10 million subscribers over the course of the Coronavirus pandemic. On the back of that, it has just set up to bring those subscribers its most expensive project ever, with Ryan Gosling and Chris Evans set to star in the Russo Brothers’ The Gray Man, Deadline reports.
The Russo’s last big budget offering was the all-time global box office record-holding Avengers: Endgame a couple of years ago. Netflix have brought them and their production company AGBO in to develop a new franchise for Netflix, with the scale of James Bond and a budget topping $200 million.
The script is by Joe Russo, and finessed by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, who scripted the Russo Bros’ Captain America and Avengers films and are AGBO’s Co-Presidents of Story.
The film is based on the 2009 novel of the same name by Mark Greaney. The novel introduces ex-CIA operative and freelance hitman Court Gentry. Gosling will be playing Gentry, hunted around the globe by his one-time CIA colleague Lloyd Hansen (Evans).
The Gray Man expanded into an international bestselling book series and the plan is for Gosling to stay on board for multiple subsequent instalments.
Anthony Russo told Deadline, “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 said of the film, “The intention is for it to be competitive with any theatrical, and the ability to do that 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 centre of it. We have all committed to the first movie, and that’s got to be great to get us to the second movie.”
Netflix obviously have a lot of faith in the project and in the Russos. The start date is slated for January in LA, with international locations in preparation.
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