It’s a tale as old as time… or at least as old as Akira Kurosawa’s 1954 classic Seven Samurai: a town being ruthlessly extorted by a group of bandits must assemble seven unlikely heroes to rise to the occasion and defend them against seemingly impossible odds. It’s a great story, so it’s no wonder that the film has been remade and retold countless times over the last six decades.
First it was converted from samurai drama to epic western by John Sturges in 1960’s The Magnificent Seven. Then there was Roger Corman’s 1980 disasterpiece Battle Beyond the Stars, which took the saga to outer space. After that, Disney put their own anthropomorphic insectoid spin on the story with 1998’s A Bug’s Life. And now in 2016, director Antoine Fuqua is bringing his unique brand of gritty, stylized storytelling to the latest remake of Seven Samurai: The Magnificent Seven. And I say “remake of Seven Samurai” because that is the film that Fuqua told me inspired him when I sat down to interview the director and his remarkable cast at the Toronto International Film Festival.
While at TIFF, I caught up with Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt, Vincent D’Onofrio, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Haley Bennett, Martin Sensmeier, Peter Sarsgaard, and Antoine Fuqua to pick their brains about the challenges of reimagining a classic story like this, their favorite on-set memories, as well as the most magnificent cowboy skills they picked up during the film’s production. Plus, the cast told me all about their real-life hidden abilities that would come in handy if we actually had to form a Magnificent Seven of our very own… but that’s coming in another video later this week, so stay tuned.
The Magnificent Seven hits theaters nationwide on September 23, 2016.
Are you excited for The Magnificent Seven? What do you hope to see from the remake? Let us know in the comments below.
Image: MGM/Columbia Pictures
You can read our review of The Magnificent Seven right here. For our complete Toronto International Film Festival coverage, click here.