With filmmaker promises not to shy away from the hugely popular video game’s iconic and gruesome killing blows, R-rated action-adventure hits theaters and HBO Max simultaneously on April 23.
Warner Bros. Pictures has just released the first seven minutes of New Line Cinema’s new R-rated action-adventure, Mortal Kombat, inspired by the hugely popular video game franchise.
Helmed by award-winning Australian commercial filmmaker Simon McQuoid, marking his feature directorial debut, the film is produced by James Wan (The Conjuring universe films, Aquaman,), Todd Garner (Into the Storm, Tag), McQuoid and E. Bennett Walsh (Men in Black: International, The Amazing Spider-Man 2).
In Mortal Kombat, MMA fighter Cole Young, accustomed to taking a beating for money, is unaware of his heritage—or why Outworld's Emperor Shang Tsung has sent his best warrior, Sub-Zero, an otherworldly Cryomancer, to hunt Cole down. Fearing for his family's safety, Cole goes in search of Sonya Blade at the direction of Jax, a Special Forces Major who bears the same strange dragon marking Cole was born with. Soon, he finds himself at the temple of Lord Raiden, an Elder God and the protector of Earthrealm, who grants sanctuary to those who bear the mark. Here, Cole trains with experienced warriors Liu Kang, Kung Lao and rogue mercenary Kano, as he prepares to stand with Earth’s greatest champions against the enemies of Outworld in a high stakes battle for the universe. But will Cole be pushed hard enough to unlock his arcana—the immense power from within his soul—in time to save not only his family, but to stop Outworld once and for all?
See how it all begins!
While New Line’s two 90’s Mortal Kombat films didn’t delve too deeply into the game’s iconic and over-the-top gruesome killing blows called “fatalities,” the 2021 reboot will not shy away. According to Lewis Tan (Wu Assassins, Into the Badlands), a martial artist who plays new character Cole Young in the upcoming film, “There are some crazy fatalities. We've picked a couple of iconic ones. There's a lot of really cool signature moves that you'll see, […] but there are some really badass fatalities that I can't wait to see on the big screen. They're brutal, man. They, they don't hold back.”
Director Simon McQuoid also commented that “Blood represents a connection. Blood represents who we are. Without getting too overcomplicated, what we did is use blood executionally."
The international cast includes Lewis Tan (Deadpool 2, Netflix’s Wu Assassins) as Cole Young; Jessica McNamee (The Meg) as Sonya Blade; Josh Lawson (Bombshell) as Kano; Tadanobu Asano (Midway) as Lord Raiden; Mehcad Brooks (TV’s Supergirl) as Jackson “Jax” Bridges; Ludi Lin (Aquaman) as Liu Kang; with Chin Han (Skyscraper) as Shang Tsung; Joe Taslim (Star Trek Beyond) as Bi-Han and Sub-Zero; and Hiroyuki Sanada (Skyscraper) as Hanzo Hasashi and Scorpion. Also featured are Max Huang as Kung Lao; Sisi Stringer as Mileena; Matilda Kimber as Emily Young; and Laura Brent as Allison Young.
McQuoid directed from a screenplay by Greg Russo and Dave Callaham (Wonder Woman 1984), from a story by Oren Uziel (Mortal Kombat: Rebirth) and Russo, based on the videogame created by Ed Boon and John Tobias. Richard Brener, Dave Neustadter, Victoria Palmeri, Michael Clear, Jeremy Stein and Larry Kasanoff served as executive producers.
The filmmaking team includes director of photography Germain McMicking (True Detective, Top of the Lake: China Girl), production designer Naaman Marshall (Underwater, Servant), editors Dan Lebental (Spider-Man: Far From Home) and Scott Gray (Top of the Lake, Daffodils), visual effect supervisor Chris Godfrey (Hacksaw Ridge), and costume designer Cappi Ireland (Lion, The Rover). The music is by Benjamin Wallfisch (Blade Runner 2049, the IT films).
The film is set for release nationwide in the U.S. on April 23, 2021 in theaters and will be available in the U.S. on HBO Max for 31 days from theatrical release. It will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures.
Source: Warner Bros. Pictures
Dan Sarto is Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network.