What We Know: The Foreigner


By: Jaclyn Cascio (@jaclynator)

Jackie Chan is well known for his comedic hijinks and acrobatic stunts. But this fall, The Foreigner will show Chan as we’ve never seen him before! The new action-thriller flick will treat us with whole new side of the 63-year-old dynamo and pair him with more than one James Bond alumni. Intrigued? Get the scoop on the upcoming film here!

Stephen Leather’s “The Chinaman” was published in 1992. A suspenseful and thrilling read, David Marconi (Live Free or Die Hard) eventually adapted the novel into a film script. In June 2015, the film project was announced with Chan already signed on to star. The next month brought Martin Campbell (Casino Royale) on board to direct. By November 2015, Pierce Brosnan joined the cast – reuniting Campbell and Brosnan for the first time since their work together on the James Bond flick GoldenEye in 1995. Working on an estimated $35 million budget, the British-Chinese co-production began principal photography in London in January 2016.

Producers Wayne Marc Godfrey, D. Scott Lumpkin, Jamie Marshall, and Arthur M. Sarkissian certainly had their work cut out for them, along with other behind-the-scenes personnel, in shooting in London. A sequence involving a bus explosion on Lambeth Bridge caused alarm in many London residents, despite a four-month long process of negotiation to make the event happen and numerous warnings to the public. The Foreigner is a great feat of cooperation, bringing together production companies The Fyzz Facility, SparkleRoll Media, and Huayi Brothers Pictures with the film set to be distributed by STX Entertainment.

Backed by music written by former Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Cliff Martinez, The Foreigner tells of the story of local restaurant owner Ngoc Minh Quan (Chan), a businessman with a troubled past that comes back to haunt him as he embarks on a journey of revenge against the terrorists who carried out a politically motivated attack that left his innocent teen daughter dead. Hunting the terrorists who took his child from the world too soon, Quan meets with conflict with British government official Liam Hennessey (Brosnan) whose one questionable past may hold the answers Quan needs to find the murderous terrorists.

Take a look at the tension-filled and dramatic trailer for yourself!

The Foreigner stars Jackie Chan as Quan and Pierce Brosnan as Hennessey with Harry Potter’s Katie Leung as Quan’s daughter, Fan. They are joined by Charlie Murphy (Love/Hate) as Maggie, Liu Tao (Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils) as Keyi Lan, Orla Brady (Into the Badlands) as Mary, Manolo Cardona as Pedro Lopez, Simon Kunz (The Last Kingdom) as Matthew Rice, Pippa Bennett (Doctor Who) as Marissa Levitt, Roberta Taylor (EastEnders) as Mrs. Taylor, Dermot Crowley (Return of the Jedi) as McGrath, Rufus Jones as Woody, and Michael McElhatton (Game of Thrones).

If you’re thinking that this looks like a new direction for Jackie Chan, you’re not alone. Director Campbell has stated, “It’s a very unique role for him, not what you’d expect of Jackie Chan. He’s playing a dead-straight role, a very quiet, determined old man with a singular focus of tracking down whoever killed his daughter.”

Known for his work as a talented and acrobatic martial artist, even Chan’s fighting style may look a little different in The Foreigner. Campbell stated, “Quan’s fighting skills are slightly more military. Jackie keeps Quan well-grounded. Pierce keeps his character well-grounded. It’s actually a very serious drama.”

So how did Chan prepare for the serious drama? “It was important for me to do a role that was more serious, with a lot of emotion. To prepare, I imagined what it would be like to be a father dealing with that situation,” he said. With a teenage daughter himself, it likely wasn’t a far stretch for Chan to imagine the lengths his character would go to.

Deviating from the days of Rush Hour (although there’s a rumored sequel in the works), Chan looks to be giving us a fresh look at his abilities. Grim and thrilling, The Foreigner might be a box office hit this fall!

The Foreigner is slated to premiere in the United States October 14, 2017 (with a slightly earlier release of September 30, 2017 in China). Are you excited to see what Chan brings to the table in the suspense flick?

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