Brad Pitt, an atypical action hero who refuses to fire a gun in 'Bullet Train'

The midlife crisis hits male Hollywood stars hard. They turn 50 and begin to want to prove that they can still be action heroes, that their bodies are perfect, oiled killing weapons. Liam Neeson was the master of that twist. With an Oscar and dramatic and mythical roles in his career, he decided that it was time to deliver blows. Brad Pitt had already delivered good blows in Fight Club and Mr. and Mrs. Smith when he was the pretty boy of the industry but now, bordering on 60, he has decided to star in the most frenetic, violent and spooky movie of his . It's called Bullet Train, and it has all the ballots to be one of this summer's titles.

Its manager is David Leicht, a producer who revitalized action cinema with John Wick and who, as a director, has shown his taste for hypervitaminized pastiche in Atomic, Deadpool 2 or Fast & Furious: Hobbs & Shaw. Here he adapts a novel by Maria Beetle full of bad milk, irreverence and a lot of blood. A movie in which many contract killers meet on a bullet train traveling from Tokyo to Morioka. Their stories will intersect in the limited setting of the transport wagons, giving rise to a succession of crazy action scenes, each one more exaggerated and violent. Pitt, who displays irony and charisma, is accompanied by a sly Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Joe King, Bad Bunny, the voice of Sandra Bullock and a few cameos that should not be revealed.

Leicht was brought the project with the script already written by his partner and producer Kelly McCormick, and as soon as he read it, it was clear that he wanted to do it. He assures that it was "the characters", and mainly 'Ladybug', Brad Pitt's character (and that he has the animal as a code name). "He's not a normal hero. He goes on the hero's journey, but he's not really learning the lessons that he needs to learn, and I think the fact that we all try to solve our problems with self-help platitudes and end up missing the real message, makes us identify with it," says David Leicht.

Although it is defined as "an action comedy", he says that he likes to think that Bullet Train has his "personal brand". "There's something very much my own in this movie, and I think it's the culmination of years of making movies. There's a little bit of John Wick, a little bit of Atomic, a little bit of Deadpool 2, a little bit of Hobbs & Shaw... those experiences as a director brought here and Bulltet Train I think has the flavor of all the things I like," he says.

The director is once again betting on a film whose violence makes it have an 'R' rating in the US, which means that those under 17 must be accompanied by an adult to see it. It is the same that all his works have had and the one that the big productions try to avoid, since their box office results are usually more limited. Leicht acknowledges that it is a decision that must be carefully considered, because "films with that rating do not usually make that much money and you have to find the balance between business and art." On this occasion, he was clear: "I felt that I could not make this film with a 13-year rating, because it would lose all the irreverence that it needed. We had to create this exaggerated world with exaggerated characters. They are murderers and we have violence and humor, and we didn't want to water them down. The script was so provocative that a water down version wouldn't have been right."

A month ago, due to the recent shootings in the US, a large group of actresses, actors and directors signed a letter committing themselves to reviewing how cinema shows the possession and use of weapons. Leicht states that "shootings are a pandemic in the US." "As artists we have to think about how we influence culture, and I think as an artist you can positively and negatively influence the world. I think we all need to be aware of that, but I think this movie is fun, and I think the action scenes are so exaggerated ... also, the protagonist decides never to use a gun, and I think there is a statement of intent there as well, "he ditches.

In a recent interview, Brad Pitt said he believed he was in "the last stage of his career." Many saw it as a hint at a possible retirement, but David Leicht believes people are "hyperbolizing what he said." "I think he's at the peak of his career and talent, and he just said he was interested in exploiting a new chapter in his career and moving in that direction. he has too much fun doing them," says the director.

Bullet Train is one of Sony's cartridges for the summer box office, which is why David Leicht thinks about the economic result, and confesses that he always feels "the pressure of the box office". "Sony has been very brave in supporting this movie and making it for theaters, and I think there needs to be more summer movies like this, that aren't just sequels and comic book adaptations, so I really appreciate that they've gone for this movie." , recounts.

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