This is gonna feel like such a tease, but the folks over at Discussing Film were able to get in touch with Greg Russo on his progress with the screenplay for the upcoming Mortal Kombat film. The script is complete according to the report, and for which Simon McQuoid remains attached to direct as he’s been since November 2016.
The inquiry therein by Eric Moskowski delves into the issue of the overall tone in comparison of sorts to the Marvel movies, and also which characters Russo generally finds pivotal to the mythology – though it still remains to be seen if they’ll be the darn movie because the studio’s lips are remaining tighter the seals of the upcoming Mueller report.
Here’s the full exchange:
INTERVIEWER: “I want to get a feel for what the tone is going to be. Because in my eyes, I’ve always seen Mortal Kombat as kind of like a Saturday morning cartoon that happens to be Rated R. They don’t take themselves too seriously, they have very far-out stories and it’s pretty tongue and cheek and comedic.”
GREG RUSSO: “Yeah, I think that’s essential when you’re talking about this property. Is there really a super serious dark version of this? Yeah, I guess, but that’s not Mortal Kombat to me. Just look at Kano as an example, he’s a great character. He’s always cracking jokes. To me there needs to a certain levity and a fun tone. While there is violence and there is fighting and real stakes and emotional stakes for all the people involved at the end of the day it still should be fun and a sense of humor. As much as I hate to throw up the direct comparison to Marvel they’re still fun and always cracking jokes but obviously ours will be a bit more adult.”
INTERVIEWER: “Can you tease what character you’ve chosen as the entry point for audiences into this universe?”
GREG RUSSO: *laughs* “That’s a tricky one. I’m not at liberty to completely give it away but I can say certainly that the original seven are important. I think they’re important to any adaptation to this property.”
Another feature film has been long in the works since the live-action adaptations by Paul W.S. Anderson and John Leonetti, based on the popular 90’s fighting game by then-Midway label (pre Netherealm Studios). Filmmaker Kevin Tancharoen arose in popularity with the announcement of a new movie after the leak of a conceptual teaser he helmed featuring Jeri Ryan, Michael Jai White, Matt Mullins and Ian Anthony Dale; The five would then partake on a 2-season webseries between 2011 and 2013 before the Fame helmer’s prospects for a feature production that year.
Signs of a third season for Legacy arose for a few years thereafter but alas, nothing came of it, even with a cast partly named. Sans character rumors and James Wan’s reaffirmations last summer on patience, the last several years proved pivotal in the film’s relevancy with his attachment to produce and with McQuoid then added to the chair, with Russo succeeding screenwriter Oren Uziel.
Late actors Trevor Goddard and Darren Shahlavi were the last known actors to play the role of Kano, and its funny that they mention that character in particular because I’ve almost always had it in my mind that Jason Statham would make a great pick to take the mantle – either him or the more agile and capable Scott Adkins for the role.
“Mortal Kombat 3” game character Kabal was confirmed last month to have an appearance in the film which otherwise remains languishing in development until further notice. Whatever the case may be though, it’s definitely a question of “when” as opposed to “if” this film is happening at all; At best, it’s feasible to hope the “when” end of things begins to shorten.
Read more at Discussing Film.
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Native New Yorker. Lover of all things pizza, chocolate, pets, and good friends. Karaoke hero. Left of center. Survivor. Fond supporter of cult, obscure and independent cinema - especially fond of Asian movies and global action cinema. Author of the bi-weekly Hit List. Founder and editor of Film Combat Syndicate. Still, very much, only human.