Remember Josh Hartnett? The actor who previously starred in Lucky Number Slevin, Black Hawk Down, 40 Days and 40 Nights, and the war drama Pearl Harbour (just to name a few) is officially set to grace our screens again in, opposite Jason Statham in a new spy thriller from Guy Ritchie.
Deadline announced on Thursday that Hartnett will join Statham, Aubrey Plaza, and Cary Elwes for the Miramax/STX film. The project previously went by the title Five Eyes but, reportedly now remains untitled, and marks the second collaboration between Hartnett, Statham and Ritchie (currently working on the upcoming action-thriller Wrath of Man). Ritchie will direct and produce the film, based on a screenplay written by Ivan Atkinson and Marn Davies (The Gentlemen.)
Hugh Grant is also reportedly in talks to join the film, having previously worked with Ritchie on 2019's The Gentlemen.
The film will centre around an M16 agent, played by Statham, tasked with preventing the sale of deadly new weapons technology. He's given this mission by a global intelligence alliance known as ‘Five Eyes’ (hence the previous title), and embarks on an international mission to, you know, save the world.
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With Statham being rather synonymous with action-packed, high-stakes films, this seems like the perfect fit – and we imagine it will follow a familiar (and effective) formula of smooth fight scenes, well-timed humour, and a lot of Statham charm.
Hartnett, for his part, will also be seen in HBO's upcoming Exterminate all the Brutes, and just recently revealed he welcomed his third child with long-time partner, Tamsin Egerton in 2019. In an interview with Mr.Porter, Hartnett shared, "The thing I am most proud of is that I'm a father of three and I have a good relationship with my partner and a great family life. I'm still able to do good work and, as I've got older, the characters have become more interesting."
While Hartnett hasn’t been entirely absent from Hollywood over the last few years, the actor did famously take a step back from the spotlight to focus on his personal life. The decision even spurred a January 2020 feature in Variety titled, ‘What Ever Happened to Josh Hartnett?’ and revealed the detail that Hartnett even turned down a chance to play Superman in 2006.
Perhaps hinting at an impending career comeback, Hartnett starred in Most Wanted, as well as Valley of the Gods last year, a project which was described by one reviewer as as “a film that starts off as being fairly berserk and quickly becomes frothing mad.” So, for those of us who missed out on that madness during the year-that-shall-not-be-named, welcoming Hartnett back onto the big screen alongside an A-list cast and crew is certainly something to look forward to. Welcome back, Josh. We missed you.
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