Jason Statham on The Mechanic, The Expendables 2, and the Gratification That Comes from Shooting Action Sequences
01.26.11 by BJSprecher
Even though British actor Jason Statham got his start in the Guy Ritchie-directed gangster comedies Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and Snatch, he has become the heir apparent to action stars like Sylvester Stallone and Bruce Willis thanks to his performances in the Transporter and Crank franchises. Statham's status as one of Hollywood's top action stars was even given the seal of approval by Stallone himself when he was hired for a leading role in the action hero-heavy cast of The Expendables. Next up, Statham will be stepping into action movie legend Charles Bronson's shoes in the remake of the 1972 movie The Mechanic. In a recent interview with Collider, Statham talked about working with top-notch talent on The Mechanic, holding out for The Expendables 2, and why shooting action scenes is so much more gratifying than dramatic scenes.
The Mechanic, about an elite assassin who makes finding his mentor's (Donald Sutherland) killers into a personal vendetta, may seem like more of the "same old same old" for Statham, but Statham said that it is a step up for him creatively.
It’s a little more interesting to play this kind of a character than some of the other roles that I've done. And I'm getting to work with more experienced producers and more experienced directors, and you know, people like Ben Foster, working with someone of that quality. I think everything just, once you get a good screenplay, it starts ... everything sort of comes in to effect with having a good screenplay. You get good producers .... Everything gets raised in some way and I think that’s the driving force, for me to work with better people doing better things, and having better scripts and I think this is certainly something that I can say is going in the right direction.
As far as future projects go, Statham said that he is "just waiting for Stallone's next film, The Expendables ," which he said he is "very positive" will get the green light./p>
I'd be the first to say "yes" to a phone call from Sly. I mean, we spoke about it as soon as the movie started to do really well and he says, you know, it would be great to do this again, and if there’s anyone who can do a good sequel it’s Sly Stallone! He’s done a fair amount. Yeah, we had a good time. It’s something I'd like to repeat.
Statham went on to say that one of the things he loves about action movies is the "immediate reward" that he gets from the rest of the cast and crew after shooting a successful action scene, something you don't get from dramatic performances.
It's great when you do something good and everyone ... there's a great excitement to ... it seems that a lot of the action is always so much more rewarding doing something in terms of the action than, you know, you do a good dramatic scene, there’s no-one clapping for that. Apart from, you know, people might get touched by it, but the actual immediate reward, if you do a good stunt and it works out well, there’s a great euphoria on set. And that just doesn't happen in dramatical scenes. A lot of people just don’t get that immediate reward.
The Mechanic was written by Richard Wenk (16 Blocks) and Lewis John Carlino and directed by Simon West (Lara Croft: Tomb Raider). Tony Goldwyn, Christa Campbell, Amber Fleck Gaiennie, and Nick Jones also star.