The Expendables 4 A martial arts movie? BTS photo tips on changing franchise
BTS footage from The Expendables 4 shows Jason Statham with Tony Jaa and Iko Uwais, hinting that the film is the most martial arts-focused in the series.
Casting and behind the scenes footage for Consumables 4 could indicate that the film is the franchise’s richest martial arts entry to date. Starting with The Expendables in 2010, the Sylvester Stallone-led franchise is famous for its all-star action star gimmick, adding more players to the roster with each new episode. Although the series has seen a commercial decline with The Expendables 3 due to its misguided PG-13 rating, Consumables 4 could re-energize the franchise thanks to some of the new members boarding the set.
Consumables 4 will include Tony Jaa and Iko Uwais, the latter representing the villain of the film, and both true legends of the martial arts genre. An Instagram post from Statham in which he expressed his enthusiasm for working with Uwais also shows Lee Christmas in a fight streak with the villain of Uwais, as well as Statham posting the same enthusiasm on Instagram to work with Jaa as well (Jaa and Uwais have already been seen in another action star set, 2019 Triple threat). Jaa also posted an image to Instagram showing off alongside Uwais and Dan Chupong, known for his work with Jaa on the Ong Bak movies and other Thai martial arts movies like The revenge of an assassin.
While these behind-the-scenes posts and footage don’t tell much about Consumables 4, they could signal that the fourth movie in the franchise could put more emphasis on martial arts battles than the series has ever done before. Obviously, The Expendables movies have never skimped on martial arts, and the series has included martial arts stars like Jet Li, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Scott Adkins, Ronda Rousey, and Wesley Snipes over the years, as well as the return of Statham and Dolph Lundgren. However, being a franchise about mercenaries heading into war zones and hostage-taking with heavy fire, The Expendables was also convincing as to when and where to give up weapons and engage in melee combat.
The presence of Jet Li in The Expendables series like Yin Yang has also gradually subsided, scheduling conflicts over The Expendables 2 explaining his early departure there, and Li also struggled with health issues as the series progressed. Additionally, while martial arts fighting has always been a component of the series, this visibly peaked in The Expendables 2 and was not such an important element in The Expendables 3. Jaa, Uwais and Chupong could predict tidal change in extent Consumables 4 could use martial arts as an aspect of his action sequences.
Statham also appears to be taking more of a leadership role in Consumables 4, Stallone declaring his retirement from the series as frontman of The Expendables Barney Ross, and saying he is “ready to hand over to JasonAlthough Statham has had his fair share of fist-and-knife fights throughout the franchise, pitting Lee Christmas against Uwais from Lowering cinema is something Consumables 4 will be sure to emphasize in its marketing when the time comes.
Although martial arts fighting has been anything but absent from The Expendables films, the specific cast of Iko Uwais, Tony Jaa, and Dan Chupong hint at a more pronounced emphasis on this one in Consumables 4. Backstage photos and social media posts from Statham and Jaa also point to the return of The Expendables franchise as moving in that direction. When Consumables 4 hits theaters in 2022, it could be an especially exhilarating race for martial arts fans especially.
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