David Cronenberg’s gritty crime thriller EASTERN PROMISES came out nearly 15 years ago and now a follow-up is in the works with Jason Statham being eyed to star.
Statham is circling Small Dark Look, a film set in the same Russian mob world as the acclaimed 2007 film that starred Viggo Mortensen. Danish filmmaker Martin Zandvliet, who was nominated for a best foreign film Oscar for his drama Land of Mine, is now on board to direct. Steven Knight, who also penned Eastern Promises, is also back to continue screenwriting duties. Story details are being kept under wraps but it’s expected to expand on the world explored in Eastern Promises.
Statham is very interested in the project and the powers that be are very interested in Statham but scheduling still needs to be worked out. The actor has suddenly become quite busy as he has several films on his roster for 2021, including a reteaming with Guy Ritchie for an untitled thriller with Aubrey Plaza, a sequel to the aquatic monster movie The Meg, and a possible Hobbs & Shaw 2, among others. It appears things will work out to land Statham but it’s all just a matter of logistics and proper planning.
Directed by David Cronenberg, Eastern Promises tells the story of a Russian-British midwife, Anna (Naomi Watts), who delivers the baby of a drug-addicted-14-year old Russian prostitute who dies in childbirth. After Anna learns that the teen was forced into prostitution by the Russian Mafia in London, the leader of the Russian gangsters threatens the baby’s life to keep Anna from telling the police about their sex trafficking ring. As Anna tries to protect the baby, she is enmeshed deeper into the criminal underworld, and she is threatened by the Mafia leader’s son and warned off by the son’s strong-arm man. The film also stars Vincent Cassel, Sinead Cusack, and Armin Mueller-Stahl.
Eastern Promises appeared on many “top 10 films” lists for 2007 and received an 89% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. A sequel or follow-up has been in the works to Eastern Promises almost since the original was released. In the intervening years, both Cronenberg and Mortensen, who received a Best Actor Oscar nomination for his performance in the film, have moved on. It looks like the potential casting of Statham and nailing down the right story has given the follow-up brand new life.
Are YOU a fan of Eastern Promises? Are YOU looking forward to the follow-up?