‘Hobbs & Shaw’: David Leitch and Drew Pearce Explain the Film’s Mysterious Big Bad

     August 5, 2019

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While Brixton (Idris Elba) is the main antagonist in Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, he’s got a boss. Brixton answers to a mysterious voice that’s the Director of the mercenary group, Eteon. The director aspires to upgrade humanity and cull out the weak through use of a programmable virus, and hopes that Brixton can get Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) and Shaw (Jason Statham) working for Eteon. Even though Brixton is defeated, the Director is still out there and his identity remains a mystery.

Although Ryan Reynolds, who has a cameo as CIA Agent Locke, likely voiced The Director (the role is credited as Reynolds’ pseudonym, Champ Nightingale), director David Leitch says that Reynolds isn’t necessarily playing The Director in a future movie. Speaking to THR, Leitch explained:

“I’ll be honest: there’s no final decision. I think we wanted to leave it open-ended. We have a lot of strong, creative ideas that are circling between Chris Morgan, the producers and myself. But, again, we wanted to give ourselves opportunity because it’s a first time out. If this was Fast Five, you’ve already built your world, and it’s good to have that cliffhanger to get into the next one. For us, we wanted to anchor our characters in two defined worlds, show the potential of this world and set it loose into the theatrical world to see how people respond. Then, we’ll react accordingly and say, “Hey, this is what the next movie should be.” We want this thing to live on for a while, and we want these characters to have many adventures. We just felt it was too early to say, “Here’s our next adventure.””

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Image via Universal Pictures

Leitch also told our own Steve Weintraub that while they circled some actors for the role of the Director, “The movie didn’t need more characters. And there was something I was liking as the movie was gelling in post that a larger theme of technology versus humanity, and maybe it was better to leave this computer voice as a computer voice and have it be a mystery. Is it a computer? Is it HAL on steroids? Is it a cameo you’re not expecting in the next movie? I thought it was better left that than, ‘Oh, look at another cameo these jackasses brought to the table!’”

For his part, co-writer Drew Pearce says that they’re not revealing who The Director is yet because they’re still deciding on it, telling Inverse:

“There’s a lot of stuff we wrote that isn’t in the movie, and in the interest of keeping those mysteries and the fact those mysteries may change from what we thought they were to what happens next, is not worth saying.”

All that’s really been hinted at is that The Director has some kind of past relationship with Hobbs, and while that may seem to indicate a character we’ve met before (and would certainly give a nice “wow” factor to the audience), it could just as easily be a new character who’s retconned into the franchise and allows an A-lister to play the heavy. We’ll just have to wait until their next adventure to find out which way they take it.

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