Over the course of his illustrious career, Denzel Washington has formed a nice working relationship with director Antoine Fuqua. The pair first collaborated on the gritty crime drama Training Day, which netted Washington a Best Actor Oscar. This decade, they've teamed up on multiple occasions - first on the action film The Equalizer and then on this weekend's The Magnificent Seven remake. It's safe to say they like making films together and audiences enjoy watching their projects.
The Equalizer is one of Washington's most commercially successful movies, grossing $192.3 million on a $55 million budget. That offering was unique in Denzel's filmography since it was positioned as a franchise starter for the actor. Washington has done a multitude of things during his time in Hollywood, but he's never been part of a film series. But that has changed, as The Equalizer 2 is coming through the pipeline. Washington was locked in for the sequel back in 2015, and Fuqua is now on board as well.
Producer Todd Black broke the news to Collider, revealing that the plan is to commence principal photography next September. Last summer, The Equalizer 2 was slated for a September 29, 2017 release, but it sounds like that schedule will be altered:
"The script is done. We start shooting right after Labor Day, maybe right before Labor Day depending on Denzel’s schedule. So Equalizer 2 will start shooting in September of next year, maybe earlier depending on another movie that we’re shooting with Denzel before that. We’re going to do a little bit more work and we’re going to go into casting right after that for his nemesis."
The other project Black is referring to is most likely Inner City, a legal drama from director Dan Gilroy (Nightcrawler) that was recently picked up by Sony. Washington is in line to star in that film, which should begin filming in March 2017. It seems as if he will hop from Inner City straight to Equalizer 2 (with a short break possibly in between). Fans should expect to see the final product at some point in 2018. The first installment in the franchise started rolling the cameras in June 2013 and premiered in October 2014. Unless Fuqua is willing to undergo the fastest production timeline in history, Sony will have to find a new release window. February has become a haven for R-rated action flicks (see: Deadpool, next year's John Wick: Chapter Two), so that could be a possible date for Equalizer 2.
It will be interesting to see how Fuqua's involvement impacts the development of the Scarface remake he signed on to helm over the summer. Though, it's worth pointing out that project has only just been announced, while The Equalizer 2 has been confirmed for some time. In all likelihood, Fuqua will be able to work on both, which is good news for moviegoers since the director has found a niche in delivering quality genre entertainment.
The Equalizer 2 is currently without a release date. We'll keep you updated on the latest information.