It looks like production on the first season of The Punisher may have been as intense as its titular character. And after spending years establishing the strength of its cinematic universe on the big screen, Marvel has been slowly expanding the TV side of the MCU as of late. None of their endeavors have been quite as successful either, as their Defenders series with Netflix, which took their time introducing beloved comic book heroes like Matt Murdock/Daredevil (Charlie Cox), Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter), Luke Cage (Mike Colter), and Danny Rand/Iron Fist (Finn Jones).
However, in the second season of Daredevil, Marvel and Netflix gave fans something they've been waiting years to see, when they introduced the first properly successful live-action version of Frank Castle/The Punisher in an adaptation that was every bit as good as the performance Jon Bernthal gave as the character. So unsurprisingly, thanks to the critical acclaim that Bernthal received for his take on the character, Marvel and Netflix wasted little time before announcing work on a Punisher standalone series.
After spending several months shooting on the streets of New York City as well, principal photography on The Punisher wrapped just a few weeks ago. According to star Ben Barnes too, filming the series was every bit as aggressive and painstaking as fans might imagine filming a series all about Frank Castle might be. Here's what the actor had to say on that matter, while speaking with W Magazine:
"There was a lot of night work and lot of action and a lot of cold nights, and a lot of the aggressive passion. You have to give it anything when you are around that energy."
Barnes is one of several actors confirmed to be appearing in the series, which also includes Jason R. Moore, Ebon Moss-Bachrach, Amber Rose Revah, Daniel Webber, and more. The series is also set to continue where Daredevil left off in a way, with Deborah Ann Woll reprising her role as Karen Page in the series, following her character's close relationship with Castle throughout the second half of Daredevil season 2.
Similar to Barnes' other recent TV project, HBO's Westworld, plot and story details from The Punisher are being kept under close wraps for the time being. So it's not entirely clear when and how the series will pick up with Castle, or what his mission will be in the first season, after already getting revenge for the murders of his family in Daredevil. It is clear, however, that Barnes will play some role in the conflict that drives Castle in the season, as his character, Billy Russo has ties to Frank's military past, and could possibly be one of the several main antagonists Frank sets his sights on this time around.
The Defenders will arrive August 18th, with The Punisher season 1 coming later this year, Daredevil seasons 1 and 2, Jessica Jones season 1, Luke Cage season 1, and Iron Fist season 1 are now available on Netflix. Premiere dates for the newest seasons of Jessica Jones, Daredevil, and Luke Cage have not yet been revealed.
Source: W Magazine