When Amazon dropped the trailer for Comrade Detective last week, viewers were intrigued. The previously unknown project features a number of major American actors, including Channing Tatum and Joseph Gordon-Levitt. The catch? We don't actually see their faces in the live-action series.
Florin Piersic Jr. and Corneliu Ulici are the faces of the lead characters, Russian detectives Gregor Anghel and Joseph Baciu — determined to bring the murderer of their fellow officer to justice in the thick of the '80s Cold War hysteria — but #ChanningTatum and #JosephGordonLevitt perform their dialogue. (Tatum also acts as an executive producer on the series.)
It's an intentional "lost series" gimmick by the creators, parodying their favorite jingoistic 1980s entertainment. Co-creator Alessandro Tanaka told Bustle in an interview how the writers channeled the "movies that we grew up with in the '80s," trying to view things from the perspective of those on the Communist perspective of things. (In the process of Anghel and Baciu's investigation, they discover a plot fueled by — gasp — capitalism to bring down their government.) Tanaka added:
"Movies like 'Red Dawn' and 'Rocky IV' and 'Rambo,' they were all pieces of Hollywood propaganda, demonizing the communists and the Soviet Union. Then we just started kicking around the idea of, 'What was [Rocky IV's] Ivan [Drago] watching from behind the Iron Curtain?'"
What resulted is an entertaining satire that will also channel a number of buddy action comedies that fans adore to this day, including 48 Hrs. and the #LethalWeapon franchise. When it came to figuring out how long the series' first season should run — and how to properly structure its story — the writers turned to some modern-day films, including Quentin Tarantino's Inglorious Basterds, according to co-creator Brian Gatewood:
"We talked a lot about Inglourious Basterds when we were first starting out to write. Sort of in the way that that works in chapters and sequences, you know, we were making a six-episode series, and we were trying to think of each episode like a chapter."
Co-starring alongside Tatum and Gordon-Levitt are supporting comedy superstars Jenny Slate (Zootopia, Obvious Child), Jake Johnson (#JurassicWorld , New Girl) and Jason Mantzoukas (The League, Brooklyn Nine-Nine), as well as fan-adored Nick Offerman (#ParksandRecreation) as the detectives' crusty Captain Covaci.
Though primarily known for producing critically-acclaimed films including #Moonlight and It Comes at Night, production company A24 are diving into the television world for their third time following the critically-successful NBC comedies Playing House and The Carmichael Show. With the star-studded cast and creative crew driving this Amazon series, Comrade Detective will be the next show fans need to dedicate their weekend to watching.
Comrade Detective will be available to stream on Amazon Prime starting August 4.
Are you looking forward to this upcoming crime comedy on Amazon? Let us know in the comments below!