Gina Prince-Beithwood always wanted to direct an action movie.
His dream was finally realized by the “Old Guard”, the adaptation of a graphic novel of the same name about a group of immortal tenants (Charlize Theron, Kiki Lane, Matthew Schwainerts, Marwan Kenzari and Luca Marinelli).
“I, for a long time, never thought I would have the opportunity to make one the way Hollywood likes to work,” says Prince-Bythwood, 51. Diversity. “But Patty Jenkins did ‘Wonder Woman’ and did such a wonderful job that it opened the door a little bit.
Prince-Bythwood explained that Skydance was intent on finding a female director when they bought the property. “They said in the room that they like ‘Love and Basketball’ and ‘Beyond the Lights’ and the characters that I gave them with it and they wanted this vibe for ‘The Old Guard’ so that it doesn’t just feel like an action.” Like a movie, but like another action drama, “he recalled.” And for me to go into space, that’s exactly what I wanted. “
The screenplay was written by Greg Rukkao, author of “Old Guard”. “I like the way the boy’s mind works, he created these women in this comic book space who are just bad-ass and warrior, but not hyper-sexualized and they were all in the ‘Old Guard’. A young black female protagonist that we never see and absolutely don’t need to see, ”Prince-Bythwood said. “I was within five pages of reading.”
Although Theron has proven himself to be one of the most successful action stars of today, Lane has never worked in genre before. He was best known for his breakout big-screen debut, transforming Barry Jenkins’ James Baldwin’s “If Bill Could Talk Street”. Jenkins showed Prince-Bythwood the first cut to set up “Bill Street” when he was casting “Old Guard” and still looking for someone to play a blueprint, who discovered he was immortal even after surviving a deadly knife attack by a terrorist.
“I was like,‘ Wow, she’s really good, but by no means can she be blue. He’s just too soft, ”he said. “And then he came to the audition and in five seconds I was like,‘ Oh my God, that’s blue. He had that innate strength, but he also had that innate weakness and this innate goodness. Kiki is a light in real life and she brought it into the role and I believe in her every moment and she has a great desire to be great. “
And Lane Helan gives The actor was at the gym for about four months with personal trainers and stunt coordinators. “When you learn to fight, when your body becomes stronger, it makes you paralyzed. You’re walking down the street now knowing you can kick someone’s ass, ”Prince-Bytewood said.“ It changes you and it helps him land a Marine. You literally saw a change in the posture of the kick. “
After opening the film in the era of Black Lives Matter, it looks like Hollywood will probably capture Prince-Bythwood, who has focused his career on putting black women in front of the camera. “I think I’ve fought for 20 years to bring black women to the screen,” she said. “These are absolutely tough films to make, but we have a few and we have to keep fighting. What’s surprising, though, is my next two projects, which I still can’t talk about, but both are big projects, both star black women and for the first time in my career, they didn’t fight. So I hope that says a lot about this industry and I hope that it will sustain itself. “
The “Old Guard” also includes LGBTQ presentations. Kenzari and Marinelli were played by a gay couple named Joe and Nikki. Other action movies have deceived gay representations to guess characters or viewers about “LGBTQ identity” due to intentional ambiguity, but let you know exactly who Joe and Nicky are and how and what they like.
Prince-Bythwood says the test audience was applauded when the two kissed in one of the emotional scenes in the film. “It was such legitimacy because Greg promised us that we would never lose it in the script,” he said. “And it was like,‘ Greg, that’s why I’m here. You don’t have to worry about that. And it was a great legitimacy for him, and I’m proud of it… wherever the world can be admired and loved, and those two people are the people’s favorite characters. “
“Old Guard” is available on Netflix.