The ‘Shaun of the Dead,’ ‘Hot Fuzz’ and ‘The World’s End’ director is back in action, and there’s nary a Cornetto in sight.
Yes, 2017 will see British writer-director Edgar Wright release his latest feature film ‘Baby Driver’ – an original action thriller, and his first directorial effort since notoriously walking away from Marvel’s ‘Ant-Man’ in 2014.
Shot in Atlanta, ‘Baby Driver’ will be Wright’s second film made outside of the UK (the other being 2011’s ‘Scott Pilgrim vs. the World’), and based on the director’s comments it may be quite far removed from his existing body of work – although, in common with all his films to date, pop music will play a key role.
Wright tells Entertainment Weekly that ‘Baby Driver’ is a crime thriller which centres on a young getaway driver played by Ansel Elgort (‘Divergent,’ ‘The Fault in Our Stars’) who suffers tinnitus, and combats this by listening to music whilst driving. As a result, Wright has choreographed the film’s action sequences to play out in time with this music.
Wright explains, “I always wanted to do an action movie that was powered by music. It’s something that’s very much a part of my previous films and I thought of this idea of how to take that a stage further by having a character who listens to music the entire time.
“So, you have this young getaway driver who has to soundtrack his entire existence, particularly the bank robberies and fast getaways that come afterwards.”
While the writer-director isn’t revealing any tracks at present, he says there are “about 35 songs in the movie and they range from very famous to more obscure. It’s supposed to reflect the character’s extremely eclectic taste in music.”
However, one other key element of Wright’s existing filmography – humour – will be notable by its absence.
Wright explains, “It’s an action crime film. It’s funny in places but it’s not a comedy. It gets genuinely tense and threatening. That was actually a fun thing for me — to do dramatic or thriller scenes which just up the ante.”
Whilst the young lead Elgort isn’t that big a name at present, ‘Baby Driver’ does boast some huge stars in the supporting cast, notably Academy Award winners Jamie Foxx and Kevin Spacey. Jon Hamm, Lily James, Eiza González and Jon Bernthal also appear.
While Marvel’s ‘Ant-Man’ turned out okay in the end, we can’t help but wonder what might have been had Wright remained. Ultimately, though, it’s surely even more exciting to see the ferociously talented filmmaker getting back to work with something of his own creation.
‘Baby Driver’ is set to speed into UK cinemas on 18 August 2017.