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Similar to the James Bond franchise, among the highlights of the Kingsman film series are the crazy gadgets its characters have at their disposal, from bulletproof umbrellas to electrified whips. However, with the upcoming prequel, The King’s Man, set to explore the origin of the Kingsman organization, you won’t be seeing quite as many gadgets due to the filmmakers wanting to stay true to the historical nature of the World War I setting. As director Matthew Vaughn put it:
No, no, no. I mean, it again, that's where it's different is it's -- we hint that it will become a thing, but it's not, because back then a gadget was having a car, you know, a gadget was having an airplane. A gadget was having an umbrella that worked or it was, you know, technology was very different. So I mean, there are moments, you know, that they, there is espionage in it, but espionage back then, they've got a carrier pigeon with a fuckin' note on its thing. So that, that was a high tech way of communicating secretly.
It would have been easy enough to imagine a Kingsman prequel taking an anachronistic approach with technology, akin to what past projects like The League of Extraordinary Gentleman have done. Certain gadgets, weapons and vehicles could be on display that look out of place and fanciful during World War I, but the Kingsman folks had created years or even decades before being made available to the public.
Rather than going that route, Matthew Vaughn informed CinemaBlend and other outlets at the The King’s Man set visit that he and his team opted to keep things much more grounded in this prequel story. So, while there may still be a few examples of characters relying on something unusual to carry out their missions of espionage, otherwise the technology that’s available to them would be commonplace in the 1910s.
‘High tech’ certainly had a much different meaning in the early 20th century than it does now, and since The King’s Man is showing how this spy agency was formed, it makes sense that those in charge haven’t devoted any resources to making cool gadgets. I’m guessing after World War II is when the organization begins churning out the kind of technology that Eggsy, Harry Hart and the agents of the modern era will come to rely on.
Originally known as Kingsman: The Great Game, The King’s Man sees Ralph Fiennes’ Duke of Oxford and his protégé, Harris Dickinson’s Conrad, coming together to stop a collection of history’s worst tyrants and criminal masterminds from unleashing a war to kill millions. The prequel’s cast also includes Daniel Brühl as Felix Yusupov, Rhys Ifans as Grigori Rasputin, Gemma Arterton as Mata Hari, Charles Dance as Field Marshal Haig, Matthew Goode as Tristan and Djimon Honsou as Shola, among many others.
After the Kingsman franchise is finished winding back the clock for this adventure, it’ll return to the present day for Kingsman 3, which will serve as the conclusion of the Harry Hart-Eggsy relationship. A Statesman spinoff and an eight-episode Kingsman TV series are also in the works.