LORE AND ORDER
Elves, orcs and… cops? David Ayer and Will Smith reunite for an LAPD thriller like no other
“IT’S TOTALLY MADDENING,” says director David Ayer. He’s talking about Joel Edgerton’s non-cg orc, a look which takes nearly three hours to apply each morning, then an hour to remove after a 12-hour day shooting. “He wanted the challenge. I think it has driven him mad. But it helps for character and performance, so it’s fine.” Easy for him to say.
Edgerton is suffering in the name of Bright, Ayer’s gritty but fantastical first post- Suicide Squad project, written by Max Landis and co-starring Will Smith.
So the story goes, 2,000 years ago there was a dark war on Earth, involving all manner of Tolkien-esque creatures, and we won — but instead of banishing the losers, we integrated them into society. Now, in present-day LA, Edgerton’s Nick Jakoby is the first orc police officer, partnering with Smith’s human cop Scott Ward.
Netflix loved the script so much, it paid a whopping $3 million for it. And without the concerns of a traditional studio, is Ayer able to push things further? “Yeah, if I wanted to,” he says. “But I’m telling a story about friendship, and I don’t need to throw a lot of insane things at the audience to do that. Although granted, there’s some pretty insane shit in this movie.” Reassuring.