For fans of Guy Ritchie’s trademark brand of action cinema, the news that the “Snatch” and “Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels” filmmaker was moving into the live-action Disney remake world with this year’s smash hit “Aladdin” might have sounded a bit out of character. What about the next “RocknRolla”? After making over a billion dollars with his Disney foray, Ritchie has teed up his first post-“Aladdin” film, one that puts him back in his classic crime wheelhouse.
Previously known as “Toff Guys” and “Bush,” “The Gentlemen” appears to be vintage Ritchie: a crime thriller with plenty of laughs, a majorly stacked cast, and a few gags that might require a bit of translation across the pond. Per the film’s official synopsis, it “follows American expat Mickey Pearson (Matthew McConaughey) who built a highly profitable marijuana empire in London. When word gets out that he’s looking to cash out of the business forever it triggers plots, schemes, bribery and blackmail in an attempt to steal his domain out from under him (featuring an all-star ensemble cast including Charlie Hunnam, Henry Golding, Michelle Dockery, Jeremy Strong, Eddie Marsan, Colin Farrell, and Hugh Grant).”
STX first showed off the film at CinemaCon back in April, and while Ritchie himself was not on hand to introduce a first look, stars Hunnam and Golding touted its action comedy bonafides. “When I read the script, it’s sort of vintage Guy Ritchie,” Hunnam said. “I grew up on ‘Snatch’ and ‘Lock, Stock,’ so when he sent me this script and invited me to be a part of it, I just jumped at the chance.” Golding echoed that same sentiment, adding, “He’s got such an iconic way about him, he really sort of created a lot of that sort of genre and camera movement.”
One other classic Ritchie-ism also on display in “The Gentlemen”: a real affection for improvisation, collaboration, and sometimes just tossing out the script wholesale. Hunnam, who previously worked with the director on “King Arthur: Legend of the Sword,” said, “Guy sort of forces you to be much more fluid, part of that process is what creates the amazing energy that he has in his films… There’s some sort of weird alchemy to his filmmaking, he’s deeply collaborative and allows everybody to imbue the project with their own philosophy, their own worldview, and yet it goes through the Guy Ritchie filter.”
STX Films will release the film on January 24, 2020. Check out the first trailer for “The Gentlemen” below.