Chances are that if you recognize the name Edgar Wright then you’re more than familiar with the English filmmaker’s body of work. While Wright officially arrived on the scene with comedy-western A Fistful of Fingers in 1995, it was his popularity with the TV series Spaced (staring a then largely unknown Simon Pegg and Nick Frost) that led to 2004’s indie smash Shaun of the Dead. The zombie comedy paid homage to the genre’s roots and played an instrumental role in revitalizing the undead for a new generation.
Since 2004, Wright has finished off his so-called Cornetto Trilogy - of which Shaun of the Dead was the first installment – with 2007’s Hot Fuzz and 2013’s The World’s End. Though his films have always been laced with heavy doses of comedy regardless of subject matter, after splitting ways with Marvel Studios back in 2014 over creative differences on his production of Ant-Man, no one was laughing. In fact, fans have been trying to console themselves ever since with thoughts of a new Edgar Wright film.
Though there’s still close to 8 months left to go before Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver arrives, thanks to EW we now have some much needed information on the project as well as two new images (below). The film tells the story of getaway driver Baby played by Ansel Elgort (Insurgent, The Fault in Our Stars) who suffers from tinnitus – an ailment that produces ringing in the ears – and who uses a constant soundtrack of music to drown the ringing out. After falling in love with Deborah (Lily James – Pride and Prejudice and Zombies), Baby decides it’s time to leave his life of crime behind, only to realize that getting out isn’t as easy as he thought. Wright had this to say on the film’s substantial supply of music:
“I always wanted to do an action movie that was powered by music. It’s something that’s very much a part of my previous films and I thought of this idea of how to take that a stage further by having a character who listens to music the entire time. So, you have this young getaway driver who has to soundtrack his entire existence, particularly the bank robberies and fast getaways that come afterwards.”
Wright also wasn’t too keen on giving too much away about the upcoming film, though he did give an idea of roughly how many songs can be expected to be played throughout Baby Driver:
“I’ll wait until nearer the time [of release]. You don’t want somebody to go, ‘Oh, that’s a good idea for this advert that comes out three months before!’ It’s quite a wide range of music, though. There’s about 35 songs in the movie and they range from very famous to more obscure. It’s supposed to reflect the character’s extremely eclectic taste in music.”
This time around however, the Shaun of the Dead filmmaker seems to be veering further away from comedy as a key component of the film – though he does insist that there are comedic elements to it:
“It’s an action crime film. It’s funny in places but it’s not a comedy. It gets genuinely tense and threatening. That was actually a fun thing for me — to do dramatic or thriller scenes which just up the ante.”
Lastly, among Baby Driver’s cast – which along with the aforementioned Elgort and James also includes Jamie Foxx, John Hamm and John Bernthal (Daredevil) -Wright was particularly taken aback by the skills of Kevin Spacey:
“He’s amazing. I had a slight out of body experience, the first day on set with [him]. His first scene was a big monologue scene, and he started doing it, and even though we’d done a table read and we’d rehearsed it, when we were doing a take, I was just completely lost in the moment of him talking. Then I thought, Oh, yeah, I wrote this! [Laughs] I was briefly hypnotized by Spacey — and him spitting out my words was an absolute joy.”
All in all, this already sounds like a very unique production. Fans have been waiting so long for something new from Edgar Wright – not to mention dealing with the disappointment of his departure from Ant-Man - that there’s sure to be ample delight in Baby Driver's arrival next summer.