Director Edgar Wright’s Last Night in Soho has cast Matt Smith and Thomasin McKenzie. The famed Shaun of the Dead filmmaker is currently on a high note after stepping away from 2015’s Ant-Man and instead moving on to the successful, adrenaline rush of Baby Driver. The film was a huge hit for Wright, whose previous highest-grossing film had been 2010’s Scott Pilgrim vs. The World.
After recently announcing that he is in the process of putting together another Baby Driver film, Wright revealed that before audiences are treated to what will arguably be a high-octane sequel, he will write and direct a psychological horror film set in London with a female lead. The film will be called Last Night in Soho and Wright has stated that it will be modeled after such classic British horror films as Don’t Look Now and Repulsion. Wright has always had one foot somewhat planted in the horror genre, with works like his Cornetto Trilogy - which consisted of Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and The World’s End - veering into horror, as well as comedy and sci-fi.
Since announcing Last Night in Soho, Edgar Wright fans have been curious as to exactly who would star in the new film and now, news of some initial casting comes to us from Variety. As of this writing, Matt Smith (The Crown, Doctor Who), as well as rising star Thomasin McKenzie (Leave No Trace), are in negotiations to join Wright’s new film. There has yet to be any information as to whether or not McKenzie will be the film’s lead, given Wright’s earlier acknowledgement that Last Night in Soho will have a female lead, though Anna Taylor-Joy (The Witch) is also on board.
Aside from knowing that Last Night in Soho will take place in London’s famed Soho district, there isn’t a lot of plot information to go on. Production on the new film will begin this summer from a script that Wright co-wrote with Penny Dreadful co-writer Krysty Wilson-Cairns. Wright has previously said that part of the driving force behind his desire to make this film is that until now, he’d never done a film about central London, and specifically Soho, where the 44-year-old filmmaker says he’s spent a great deal of his time over the course of the last 25 years. To Wright, this is the London he has “existed in”, rather than just lived in. From the sounds of it, Wright’s desire to make a film about London is something of a love letter to his hometown, which makes for an interesting setup to a psychological horror-thriller.
As a filmmaker, Wright seems to have always known what he wants from his work. His desire to pay both homage to and mock the dynamics of Hollywood action blockbusters came through loud and clear in 2007’s Hot Fuzz, as did his repeated claims that Baby Driver would make an actual character out of the music that its soundtrack utilizes. If Wright now says that his latest work is a film about central London, then at this point in his entertaining career there is little reason to doubt him. It’s hard to think of two better examples of British horror to be inspired by than Don’t Look Now and Repulsion, though those films certainly aren’t for everyone. Here’s hoping that Last Night in Soho can hit all the highs that Edgar Wright fans have come to expect.