One of my favorite films at this year’s Sundance Film Festival was writer-director Gareth Evans’ The Raid 2. Picking up right where the first film left off, the sequel follows Rama (Iko Uwais) as he goes undercover and infiltrates the ranks of a ruthless Jakarta crime syndicate in order to protect his family and uncover the corruption in his own police force. Loaded with some of the best action sequences I’ve ever seen, The Raid 2 is truly a must-see movie. Thankfully, with a March 28th release date, you won’t have to wait too long to check it out (although it might be trimmed down a bit because of the extreme violence). The film also stars Julie Estelle, Alex Abbad, Marsha Timothy, Arifin Putra, Mathias Muchus, Tio Pakusadewo, and Cecep Arif Rahman.
The morning after the world premiere, I landed an extended video interview with Evans. During our wide-ranging conversation (which is spoiler free), he talked about the pressure to raise the bar with the sequel, his writing process, the length of the shoot (132 days), the size of the budget ($4.5 million), deleted scenes, if he’ll release an extended cut on Blu-ray, how the MPAA might react to the film, how close the Sundance cut will be to the final version released in theaters, the status and subject of The Raid 3, his thoughts on the Marvel superhero Iron Fist, if he’s interested in directing it, future projects, his favorite John Woo movie, and so much more. If you’re a fan of Gareth Evans, I promise you will love this interview. Hit the jump to watch.