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WonderCon: Wanted Definitely a 'Hard R' Based on Footage

by
February 22, 2008

Wanted

Coming live from WonderCon in San Francisco, we've been shown a glimpse of the first real footage from the upcoming comic book flick Wanted and it's pretty intense. After watching the first teaser trailer, we weren't sure whether to expect a PG-13 comic book flick or something more extreme. After watching this full five minutes of footage here today at WonderCon, I can confirm that it is definitely going to be a hard R. Not only did James McAvoy drop about six F-bombs in that five minutes, but the violence is quite excessive (although no dead bodies were to be seen). Director Timur Bekmambetov is an incredibly visual director and it certainly showed in the over-the-top footage we saw.

The footage started out with the scene from the trailer (see the photo below) where Angelina Jolie whips out the gun that can "look around corners." It takes place in a supermarket and it must be early in the story, because McAvoy still isn't aware of what is going on. After attempting to take out the gunman hunting McAvoy and Jolie down, he runs out into the parking lot attempting to escape. Jolie whips around in a red Viper, pulls a 360 in the car with the door open and, while crouching, McAvoy lands safely in the passengers seat. That thrilling moment can already be seen in the trailer.

The scene then continues for another few minutes with Jolie being chased down the street in the Viper. Eventually, after causing some gnarly crashes, she shoots out the front windshield and leans out attempting to shoot her pursuers while laying on the hood of the car (see photo above). The footage ends with the Viper swerving around a corner towards a blockade of police cars. Via some means yet unknown, she causes the car to hit an edge and flip horizontally over the police cars and smack into the side of a bus, where it flips over again and lands on the roof, then drives off without a scratch.

Wanted

In the introduction from Timur Bekmambetov, who couldn't be in attendance because he's still working on the movie in Los Angeles, he mentioned two important details: as of now he's still working on "additional footage" and that Danny Elfman is doing the score. Wanted was initially slated to be released in late March of this year (but was recently moved to June 27th), and it's obvious they're still far from being ready, as the footage we were shown had half-finished CGI and editing. Now with Timur confirming that they're possibly doing reshoots, it may mean that Universal Pictures is actually putting more effort and money into this to make sure it becomes a strong summer blockbuster.

Danny Elfman scored the first and second Spider-Man movies, Big Fish, and recently The Kingdom, among countless others, and his addition is definitely a good sign that this isn't just a small, forgettable flick. While the choice of composer is really no real indication of quality, it does mean that Universal is really supportive of the movie and going all out to make Wanted amazing, including with good music. Although I'm nervous about the "additional footage" that Timur mentioned, it sounds like this is actually turning into a full-fledged summer blockbuster and moving beyond just a forgettable comic book movie.

Wanted is based on a series of comic books by Mark Millar that were first published in 2003. During the Q&A for Wanted, James McAvoy stated that Mark Millar "has actually seen the film and really likes it." This is yet another positive aspect that goes to show things might really be falling into place for Wanted: the footage was intense and entertaining, Elfman is scoring, it's aiming for a hard R rating, and the comic book author likes the movie version of his work. While I won't say it's anything near what we will eventually see in Iron Man or The Dark Knight, it does look a lot better than I was initially expecting.

Wanted is directed by Russian filmmaker Timur Bekmambetov, of Night Watch and Day Watch previously. The movie is based on a comic book series by Mark Millar and J.G. Jones published by Image Comics. Wanted hits theaters full force this summer on June 27th.

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  • Keith
    Im looking forward to this now. thanks for the update
  • Curtis
    Sounds like it could be a lot of fun and action packed im glad its not a PG-13 movie and its a R rated movie, thats they way to go with a comic book movie.
  • Jojo
    I have a feeling that this will be a huge dud at boxoffice but will be have a small die hard fanbase who absolutely love the flick.
  • israelidude
    I still frown upon the american rating system: all you heard was six variations of "fuck" and "it's a hard R"? what is going on over there??? words are words, and just that.....while every pg 13 out there has at least some level of physical violence, not to mention a gun showing sometimes, and you guys think that foul language is what's driving high school kids to shoot up their classes?!??! take a reality check guys....you're rotting away from the inside out. p.s.: Jolie sucks bigtime. and that's every performance she ever made, and we don't care about oscars over here.
  • israelidude
    and another thing......the around the corners gun is an israeli invention that has been since deemed worthless, and too expensive to manufacture. but of course now that Jolie's fondling it it will become the next thing you get in texas when you open a bank account, or something.
  • http://www.firstshowing.net Alex Billington
    Okay, israelidude, you're missing the point. It's not ME who is saying that, it's that the system that rates movies is based on language. Blame the MPAA, not me... I think that's what you're getting at. Also, there is a lot MORE to this movie than just the five minutes I saw, so there could be a lot more violence that puts this at an R rating. No one is saying that high school kids shoot up classes because of language... This is a discussion on why things are rated R, not that language from this causes anything like that...
  • http://movieguyreviews4u.blogspot.com Ryan
    Jolie is looking good here :)
  • israelidude
    You're right, Alex. I was going at it waaay too hard. I guess my initial disapproving with the story line of "Wanted" got me annoyed the first time around...the whole concept of kids (especially kids the same age as the protagonist) finding out that they are kin to a prestiged hit man, is ludicrous to me. There is a certain fascination with violence in America that borders on worship of fire arms and it saddens me to say that there is also a rise in violence in recent years, here in Israel. Our culture learns early on to treat guns with caution. we have 3 yrs. of army that leave their mark on us and allows us a good perspective of the reality of a gun, while in other countries, it seems, guns are a way of getting what you want. I can understand the anchoring of fire arms in the constitution, but I don't see the advantages of glorifying it in cinema.... Sure, I enjoy violence in cinema and computer games as much as the avarage American teen, but I use it more as a channeling of rage, rather than taking it into the real world. EVERYBODY swears!!! It never harmed anyone unless they wanted to make a big deal out of it. I guess the MPAA should consider reversing their priorities of censorship and rating. As for the movie....I guess I'll see it eventually, although I'll get someone else to pay for my ticket, or to download it. never submit to unneeded violence!!!! even if someone tells you to fuck off.
  • Darrin
    i like the fact that this film is rated R, reason saying that, the film suppose to be rated R because one of the character's name is 'fuckwit'.Yes im serious.
  • t
    why is it going to be a hard r just because of curse words and the action??

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