The London Toy Fair hosted a variety of reveals for upcoming merchandise from your favorite movies and TV shows, but no one had more reveals than Funko and the never-ending line of Funko POPs vinyl figures. The toy company had dozens of new figures to reveal from a wide variety of programming ranging from The Empire Strikes Back and the Harry Potter franchise to Murder, She Wrote, Dinosaurs, American Psycho and even a classic Marilyn Monroe. Check out some of our favorite forthcoming 2020 Funko POPs announced at the London Toy Fair below. Read More »
Chances are, you’ve all been watching and appreciating Chris O’Hara‘s work for a long time without even realizing it. He’s been in the stunt world going back to the early ’90s and worked on Fight Club with frequent collaborator, stunt performer-turned-Hobbs & Shaw director David Leitch. Since then, the stunt performer-turned-stunt coordinator has worked with the Wachowskis, he contributed to the John Wick films and, undoubtedly the most dangerous stunt job of them all, We Bought A Zoo. He’s brought his expertise to huge franchises, including Jurassic World and The Hunger Games. During a press day for the Blu-Ray release of Hobbs & Shaw, we got a chance to talk to him about his latest work.
After speaking with O’Hara, I actually got to recreate a stunt from the movie with the help of a few very cool stuntmen. Just as you might exactly imagine, I made Dwayne Johnson’s skills pale in comparison. “It’s like a dance,” the stuntmen would say, breaking down the specific steps required to properly kick someone in the groin. (Keep your foot flat facing downward, if you’re interested.) Experiencing the specificity of the subtlest of moves, really, made the fight scenes in Hobbs & Shaw all the more impressive and artful. It truly is like a dance — except with more liability and danger. Go too far with an elbow hit and, well, it’s not pretty. Imagine an elbow landing on a temple and try not to cringe. Even seemingly minor moves are ripe with danger. Another observation from working with these stuntmen: as shown by the Academy Awards, they just don’t get enough of the love or acclaim they deserve. One of them even remarked it was nice to see excitement and appreciation over what they do for a living.
Below, you can find a few nuggets of information we learned from speaking with O’Hara about his take on the next-level fights in the John Wick franchise, finding stuntmen to fight alongside Dwayne Johnson, and the athleticism of Jason Statham.
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Don’t say the word “grounded” to director David Leitch. The filmmaker behind Atomic Blonde, Deadpool 2, and most recently, Hobbs & Shaw, wants his big blockbusters to live in a fantasy land far, far away from gritty reality. He wants his escapism to look cool and stylish, not familiar. It’s probably why his sensibilities were suited for the Fast & Furious franchise, which are basically superhero movies with cars instead of capes.
Hobbs & Shaw is probably the most fantastical entry in the series, with minor elements of science-fiction and superhuman acts performed by the titular duo. Realism has no place in this franchise, which allowed Leitch to have as much fun as possible with all the franchise’s toys and staples. While staying true to the family spirit and ridiculousness of the franchise, Leitch also brought his eye-popping graphic novel style to the Fast & Furious franchise.
Recently, at a press day for the Hobbs & Shaw Blu-Ray release, the filmmaker told us about bringing his style to the series, his fondness of John Woo and Jackie Chan, and his distaste of the word “grounded.”
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The days of boosting cars and racing for pinks is long gone in the Fast & Furious world. The earliest installments in the series continue to look comically quaint in comparison to the likes of Hobbs & Shaw, although the mega movie does tip its hat to the old days of the franchise once or twice. In addition to all the globe-trotting and saving the world business expected from Fast brand, Hobbs & Shaw now brings a touch of sci-fi to the franchise. And director David Leitch seems to be having a blast with it.
The spinoff still has the tone, sensibility, and taste for the ridiculousness of a Fast & Furious movie, but more than anything else, it plays like a comic book movie. The co-founder of 87Eleven and filmmaker behind Atomic Blonde and Deadpool 2 could’ve put superhero costumes on Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham in this movie, and they wouldn’t have looked out of place. Leitch, as he told us, had comic book movies on his mind when making his XXX-L summer movie.
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