The Russo Brothers are developing their next directorial outing: a film adaptation of Mark Greaney’s 2009 novel “The Gray Man” for Netflix. The director duo of Avengers’ fame follows up 2021’s “Cherry” with this $200 million Netflix original, making it the most expensive movie to debut on the streaming service.
The ambitiously expensive film will star Chris Evans, Ryan Gosling, Ana de Armas, Regé-Jean Page, Billy Bob Thornton, and Jessica Henwick. The superstar cast could be a bulk of the budget, but potential viewers can expect everything from Netflix’s next tentpole movie.
The story focuses on an international manhunt between former CIA colleagues Court Gentry (Gosling) and Lloyd Hansen (Evans).
With Netflix experiencing its first loss in subscribers for the first time in a decade, it is interesting that they’re spending such a large amount of their budget on a crime drama. Greaney’s Gray Man novel series is eleven books and running, which establishes the precedent for a multi-movie franchise. It may very well be Netflix’s boldest gamble yet.
If that is the case, the Russo’s might be the most equipped to handle the spy thriller franchise. Responsible for helming multiple Captain America and Avengers installments, they have plenty of experience juggling numerous characters and plotlines in a single continuity. In fact, the brothers read the Greaney novel on the set of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. They originally planned to film The Gray Man after but Marvel Studios asked them to return for the third Captain America movie. It was on the back burner until they started production in 2020.
They are joined by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely in adapting the first movie. Those familiar with the writer duo know their involvement with multiple Marvel Cinematic Universe entries (even some outside of the Russo Brothers’ projects) and “The Chronicles of Narnia” film franchise.
Many are wondering what the Gray Man author thinks of the upcoming movie. Military.com conducted an interview and asked him his thoughts on the script by Joe Russo, Markus, and McFeely.
“[The writers] sent me the shooting script last year right as they started filming, and I was blown away by it. So I’m super excited that the movie is actually finally coming to pass.”
The Gray Man novels are a #1 New York Times bestselling series by Greaney. It spans eleven books with the last one, “Sierra Six,” having been released in February 2022. He has written one every year since 2009 with a few exceptions in the period between 2011 and 2016, which can most likely be attributed to co-authoring several Tom Clancy books. In an interview with The Big Thrill, Greaney mentions that he will be releasing a standalone novel “Armored” in Summer 2022. The twelfth Gray Man (working title: “Burner”) book will be coming out in 2023.