Hollywood is loving it some "veteran, respected actor turns to gritty action films" lately. Between Liam Neeson's, well, entire resumé these last few years and last weekend's 3 Days To Kill with Kevin Costner, it's clear that studios are seeing a real upside to these relatively small-budgeted action flicks that are anchored by one well-known star. We already knew that Academy Award-winner Denzel Washington, 59, was set to appear in The Equalizer, but now TheWrap is reporting that the studio is quickly assembling a sequel to the R-rated actioner.
The film would find Washington's character, a retired intelligence officer, pulled back into the violent life he had left behind when his path crosses with that of a young prostitute in danger with the Russian mob. The girl will be played by Kick-Ass and Carrie star, Chloë Grace Moretz.
Sony is apparently feeling extremely confident in The Equalizer, which opens in 7 months, because it's testing through the roof. Supposedly, the early scores they're receiving from audiences are the highest the studio has ever seen for an R-rated film. So in anticipation of the film's release, they want to start getting the pieces together for a follow-up so that they're prepared to strike while the iron is hot. One tricky issue could be Washington's contract, which doesn't include a sequel. The actor has never done a sequel before and, if the studio really is chomping at the bit, he and his agents may ask for quite a hefty raise for a follow-up.
One boon to the negotiations could be Antoine Fuqua, with whom Washington has now worked twice. Fuqua, whose credits also include Shooter and Olympus Has Fallen, is at the helm of The Equalizer and his return for a sequel could help convince his Training Day star to return.
The Equalizer, which will be a feature adaptation of an 80s TV show, arrives on September 26.