'Snake Eyes' Movie Will Be "More of a Martial Arts Film Than a Superhero Movie," Says Star Henry Golding

Paramount Pictures is banking on Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins to re-spark the dwindling embers of its G.I. Joe film franchise. One thing the new film has going for it, according to star Henry Golding, is that it is not just another a cookie cutter entry into the ever-growing genre of superhero cinema. In a new interview, he instead describes this solo film as “much more of a martial arts film” and explains why he “fucking hated” the first week of production.

Luckily, production wrapped on the new Snake Eyes movie just before Hollywood productions went into lockdown because of the coronavirus pandemic. But putting the pandemic aside, it sounds like Golding had a tough go of it at the start: according to NME (via ComicBookResources), his grueling schedule included four hours of stunt choreography and three hours of script work, followed by 90 minutes of private fitness training. That’s quite a step up from flashing a thousand-watt smile on the set of Crazy Rich Asians or charming Emilia Clarke during the rom-com Last Christmas.

“To be honest, it was painful,” Golding said of those early days on the Snake Eyes set. “It’s definitely much more of a martial arts film than a superhero movie. It’s very, very physical. I fucking hated it in the beginning because I couldn’t even squat down and go to the bathroom. The first week was literal hell. I think I cried on the phone to my manager. I was like: ‘I don’t know what I’m doing!’”

Golding’s pain notwithstanding, this sounds like a step up from previous G.I. Joe movies to me. I’ve already lost interest in this franchise, but one way to pull me back in is by leaning into the martial arts angle and creating exciting, innovative fight scenes in the vein of The Raid. We don’t yet know exactly what the choreography is going to be like or if this will even try to capture the style of what Gareth Evans did with those movies, but the idea of a Snake Eyes movie being a physical, rough and tumble martial arts film instead of a generic superhero movie seems like a step in the right direction.

Snake Eyes has just blown me away,” Golding continued. “They’ve recreated G.I. Joe into something very cool and a far throw from what we’ve seen thus far on the big screen. I think there’s room for many spin-offs, to be honest. This, I think, will be the launch of a brand-new franchise.” He’s right about that last part: a follow-up movie is already in the works.

Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins is currently slated to hit theaters on October 22, 2021.

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