From the looks of the marketing, Antoine Fuqua's The Magnificent Seven looks like one hell of a ride. It is about time the most anticipated movie of the month is a western. The ensemble holds up as one of the most diverse blockbuster casts of the year, which is vital in a field that is begging for diversity. Hopefully this fun and gory shoot-em-up thrill ride uses its talent to its advantage.
Haley Bennett is a name that you have probably not heard of before, but by the end of the year you will. The actress, who I honestly have confused with Jennifer Lawrence before, has been quite busy as of late. Besides The Magnificent Seven, she has starred as the love interest in Hardcore Henry, and will be the mystery in the upcoming Girl on the Train. She will also be a central character in Warren Beatty's new film Rules Don't Apply, alongside Ed Harris and newly announced Han Solo, Alden Ehrenreich. This is not the first time she has worked with Fuqua and Washington. Her previous collaboration with the both of them was 2014's The Equalizer. If these next few performances are as worthwhile as they look, by the end of the year she might be considered as one of the biggest breakouts of 2016.
Vincent D'Onofrio is one of the most talented character actors working today. Who was once only known as Private Pyle from Stanley Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket has grown to star in mainstream blockbusters like Oliver Stone's JFK and as Edgar in the iconic Men in Black. For mainstream audiences, he likely resonates most as Wilson Fisk from Daredevil, the ruthless though childish villain has become one of the best antagonists in all of television, and definitely exceeds the cliche villains that Marvel has become used to. The Kingpin is a fantastic example of D'Onofrio's talent, and how he can completely own over-the-top characters. In addition, this is not the first time he has stood alongside Pratt — they also co-starred in last year's Jurassic World. He was also part of the ensemble of Fuqua's Brooklyn's Finest
Fun fact: D'Onofrio once was a recurring character in The Equalizer, the television show on which Fuqua's last film was based.
Is it even possible to summarize Denzel Washington in one paragraph? The man has such a large filmography and is arguably the best African-American actor of the past generation. It is very hard to find something that his talent isn't great in. The frequent collaborator with Fuqua looks to do the job again in what looks to be a beautiful western. Washington has been nominated for an Academy Award a total of six times, winning two of them, the last one being their first film, Training Day. He seems to be pushing towards the Oscar season yet again this December with his next film, Fences, which he himself directed. Last time he helmed a feature, it came with inspiring results. Hopefully he can reach or even exceed the success he received with The Great Debaters. The film is to be released this Christmas.
Martin Sensmeier is most likely a name you have never heard before, because this is his first actual role in a feature motion picture. That is a marvelous feat for the Native American, whose race largely lacks attention or even respect in the Hollywood film industry. Recently, whitewashing has been a very controversial subject, with one of the most impacted victims being Native Americans.
The film industry has suffered from backlash in previous years due to the castings of Rooney Mara as Tiger Lily in 2015's Pan and Johnny Depp's iteration of Tonto in 2013's The Lone Ranger. The Magnificent Seven seems to aim towards changing the tide when in comes to this situation. Hopefully, future films will learn from its achievement. Sensmeier will also be seen very soon in the highly anticipated HBO series Westworld, which premieres October 2nd.
Ethan Hawke is a very underused actor. In every film Hawke appears in, he is always one to watch. Audiences are not the only ones who love Ethan Hawke; directors love him too. He has teamed up with Fuqua many times in his accomplished career as an actor, appearing in Brooklyn's Finest and Training Day, which he co-starred with Magnificent Seven's lead, Denzel Washington. He also has appeared in a lot of Richard Linklater films, even writing with the director for two installments of the Before Trilogy, both of which earned him Academy Award nominations. He was recently recognized as the father in Linklater's Boyhood and has starred in The Purge, Sinister and other low-budget horror films. Maybe Hawke should move on from the horror genre and onto bigger blockbusters like this one.
"Oh, we're good. We have a Mexican." That is a 100 percent authentic line that Chris Pratt says in the trailer, and for the sake of diversity, this is much of a very good thing. Like Martin Sensmeier, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo is a little-known performer, but those who do recognize the actor may know him from From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series, in which he did have a recurring role. Another thing that they have in common is the fact that this is their first time in a mainstream blockbuster, which is sure to get their names out there. In addition to the television series he also had a supporting role in the independent film Cake, which received a nomination for best actress at the Golden Globes last year.
After Guardians of the Galaxy, Chris Pratt rocketed into stardom. Jurassic World turned him into an A-lister. His rise to fame took a very short time, and his performances immediately turned him into a household name. No longer is he known as the guy Professor X slapped with a keyboard in Wanted, and no longer is he in supporting roles. Chris Pratt has turned into a bonafide film star, but for many he will always be the funny and clumsy Andy Dwyer. It is already clear audiences will watch everything that the performer is in, whether it's a western, a space opera, or a sci-fi romance. Who knows? Maybe Chris Pratt might even score an Oscar nomination for his role in Passengers at the end of the year. Is is right in the thick of awards season after all.
Did you know Chris Pratt played Obi-Wan for LucasArts before? Check it out!
You may probably know Lee Byung-hun as Snake Eyes's archenemy Storm Shadow from the G.I. Joe franchise, in which the character takes part in awesome fight scenes. The scenes between the two are always the highlights of the films, but did you know that Lee is a very famous South Korean film star? He has received critical acclaim for many roles he has taken in his native country, and has had a successful run for a minority in the United States as of late. In addition to G.I. Joe, Lee also portrayed the secondary villain in Terminator: Genisys, playing the T-1000 who goes after Emilia Clarke's Sarah Connor in the film. Hopefully, Fuqua puts the assassin to good use in the film, the casting is already very exciting.
See the whole cast in action in The Magnificent Seven trailer below:
Are you excited for The Magnificent Seven?