Back in 2007, Viggo Morstensen gave us one of the best performances of his career with the Russian mob thriller Eastern Promises, directed by David Cronenberg. For a long time, a sequel was in development, but it never came together. Focus Features isn’t letting the script go to waste though. Because now it’s being turned into a new crime thriller called Small Dark Look that will have Jason Statham in the lead role.
Collider has news on Small Dark Look, formerly known as Body Cross in 2018. And originally developed as Eastern Promises 2. But since David Cronenberg and Viggo Mortensen aren’t coming back to make that happen. The script written by the original film’s writer Steven Knight is being turned into an original movie.
When the movie was Eastern Promises 2. It followed Vincent Cassel‘s incompetent mid-level crime boss thinking that he and his henchman driver Nikloai (Viggo Mortensen) had inherited the throne from his mob boss father. But he still doesn’t know that Nikloai is a clandestine agent working undercover in Russia’s federal security service. The story can easily be repurposed into an original story. But it’s not clear if any major changes were required since the movie is no longer an Eastern Promises sequel.
It’s a little disappointing that we’re not getting this story as Eastern Promises 2. Viggo Mortensen brought so much gravitas to the original film. And it would have been great to see him carry on as Nikolai. Will Jason Statham still be playing the lead character as Russian? That remains to be seen, but the story is said to be set in London, so that would seem to imply that Statham won’t be changing his accent. Maybe he’ll surprise us.
Statham hasn’t finalized a deal to star in Small Dark Look yet. But he’s reportedly been circling the role for over a year. So it’s something he’s certainly keen on. There are also some other “tough guy roles” in the movie, so there’s an opportunity to put a solid ensemble around Statham and hopefully make this more than just a forgettable crime thriller making use of the actor’s status as an action star.
Small Dark Look will be directed by Martin Zandvliet (Land of Mine). Who is stepping up to replace Lady Macbeth director William Oldroyd, who boarded the project when it was called Body Cross. Paul Webster is producing