Brian Helgeland interview

Set in the 1960s, Brian Helgeland‘s Legend opens with East London gangsters Ronnie and Reggie Kray already at the top of the food chain, avoiding the typical rise-and-fall structure we see in most biopics. Everyone knows the gangsters, and not just because they’re two bulky, hard-hitting twins. Everyone loves Reggie, a charming, friendly face with a sense of panache. His brother, Ronnie, however, is less popular. The hulk of a man is a bit mad and doesn’t share his brother’s good looks or smarts.

Both twins are played by actor Tom Hardy (Mad Max: Fury Road). A dual performance is tricky for a variety of reasons. Even if Hardy delivered a simply good performance, it might not have been enough to prevent an audience from focusing on the gimmick of two Tom Hardys in a scene together. But Hardy is fantastic in Legend because he’s serving the story, not showing off his acting or technical trickery.

Helgeland credits Hardy and his director of photography, Dick Pope (Mr. Turner), for making the two performances disappear into the story. But of course, Helgeland also deserves recognition for pulling off such a feat. The director made seemingly minor but vital decisions to make an audience believe Hardy in both roles.

Here’s our Brian Helgeland interview, in which he discusses brotherhood, Tom Hardy’s performance, the American mafia, and recreating the 1960s.  Read More »


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new Legend trailer

It’s impossible to resist the idea of seeing Tom Hardy playing twins, and so we’re going to indulge our affinity for that idea with a new trailer for Legend, the UK gangster film in which Hardy plays Ron and Reggie Kray, the twins who became infamous as rulers of London’s underworld in the 1960s. The film comes from Brian Helgeland (who se credits include, among other things, being co-screenwriter of LA Confidential, and director of A Knight’s Tale and 42), who writes and directs based on the true story of the brothers’ wild lives. Check out the new Legend trailer after the break.  Read More »

Legend UK trailer

There’s a new Legend UK trailer, showing off the film featuring the dual performance from Tom Hardy that should satisfy even the most rabid fan of the actor.

And if you’ve not seen a prior trailer for Legend, Tom Hardy plays both Reggie and Ronnie Kray, the gangster twins who took over parts of London’s rackets in the ’60s. Hardy is smooth as the ambitious Reggie, and adopts a bit of the old Marlon Brando “cotton in the mouth” technique to play the violent Ronnie. This trailer has more story than the teaser, and new footage not seen in the last US trailer; have a look below. Read More »

Legend Trailer

Tom Hardy plays gangster twins Ronald and Reginald Kray in the film Legend, and the new Legend trailer — the first domestic trailer for the film, following a UK debut — makes Hardy’s dual-character performance look like one of the must-see film events of 2015. Read More »

Legend starring Tom Hardy

Tom Hardy is all over the place this year. There’s so much of him to go around, in fact, that we’re actually getting two of him in one movie. Legend stars Hardy and Hardy again as Reginald and Ronald Kray, real-life twin gangsters who ruled London in the 1960s.

It’s the latest film from writer-director Brian Helgeland, who won an Oscar in 1998 for exploring similarly dark, stylish territory with the script for L.A. Confidential. Watch the first Legend trailer after he jump.  Read More »


What’s better than a new crime drama starring Tom Hardy? How about a new crime drama starring two Tom Hardys?

Directed by Brian Helgeland, Legend stars the Dark Knight Rises actor as identical twins / notorious British gangsters Ronald and Reginald Kray. Our first look at the film has just arrived. See it — and get the scoop on some new casting — after the jump.

Read More »

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Brian Helgeland adapted a story of famed American gang dealings in L.A. Confidential, and now he’s going to chronicle an unusual and notorious pair of London mobsters. He’s set to write and direct Legend (title subject to change), in which Tom Hardy may end up playing identical twin brothers Ronald and Reginald Kray, who dominated the London crime scene in the ’60s before being sentenced to life in prison in 1968. Read More »


Is Will Smith looking to make up for balking at starring in Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained by starring in a remake of one of the biggest landmarks in the Western canon? Smith has signed to produce and star in the remake of Sam Peckinpah’s The Wild Bunch, which Warner Bros. has been trying to kickstart for a few years. That’s a piece of news that sounds pretty ridiculous, as the family-friendly guy who shied away fro Django is just about the last guy I’d expect to remake a film famous for its violence and adult themes.

(And yeah, let’s just get it out of the way: The Wild Wild Bunch. There, now we can move on.)

Read More »

The story of Jackie Robinson is one of the most important stories in sports history, but it is also one of the most important social stories of the 20th century. As the first black ballplayer in Major League Baseball, Robinson became one of the focal points at an early stage in the ever-evolving shift in American race relations. Which is to say that he was subjected to the same scorn, intimidation, and attacks as many other black men and women, but on a much larger scale.

The first full trailer for 42 is a dramatic, energetic thing, but it is also infuriating. It recreates some of our worst behavior in broad strokes, and even if the actions seen here are dramatically enhanced, the core attitudes and behavior have an inarguable basis in history. And while 42 sports Harrison Ford grumping and growling his way through some pretty impressive makeup, there’s enough of a sense of reality in this footage to make the intimidation of Robinson (played by Chadwick Boseman) have serious impact. Presumably, that will also make his eventual victory and acceptance pay off with the power of a grand slam. Read More »