Director Roland Emmerich's new war film Midway just opened in theaters on November 8, ahead of Veterans Day on Monday, November 11. Midway is based on the true story of the pivotal World War II battle, with U.S. and Japanese naval forces clashing six months after Japan attacked Pearl Harbor. The film stars Ed Skrein as Lieutenant Richard "Dick" Best, and he has a specific goal for the movie.
Ed Skrein told CinemaBlend he's a proud Londoner but also "a global citizen." The Deadpool and Game of Thrones (but not Hellboy) star said he wanted Midway to stand for all of the men who fought in the battle -- the Japanese soldiers as well as the Americans. Here's what he told us:
As Ed Skrein's Midway co-star Dennis Quaid noted in his own interview with CinemaBlend, the Battle of Midway was a turning point for the U.S. in World War II, marking a decisive victory for the Americans. The world could've looked very different if the June 1942 battle turned out another way.
Here's Ed Skrein's hope for Midway to represent the bravery of all of the men involved:
I also just kind of wanted to represent all of the servicemen, you know, and the bravery of all these men. I have incredible respect for the Japanese soldiers and pilots and Navy men as much as the Americans. It's the same in the European battlefield. We're here in 2019, it's a changed world, and we must be grateful for the relative peace that we live in. These men contributed to that. ... That was an important thing, as well, just to represent the bravery of all of the men involved in the war.
Watch more from our interviews with Midway stars Patrick Wilson, Dennis Quaid, Ed Skrein and more -- plus director Roland Emmerich.
The 138-minute movie didn't seem to have any trouble attracting major names for the cast -- including Woody Harrelson, Luke Evans, Aaron Eckhart, Nick Jonas, Darren Criss, Alexander Ludwig, and Mandy Moore -- in addition to Ed Skrein, Dennis Quaid, and Patrick Wilson.
Midway is hardly the first war film, or the first to spotlight a major World War II battle -- from Michael Bay's Pearl Harbor to Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk and the many in between.
However, director/producer Roland Emmerich struggled to get funding for Midway. While the film is said to have a $100 million budget, it was made outside the studio system, leading Variety to dub Midway one of the most expensive indie films ever made. Because he couldn't get a major studio to back a higher budget, the Independence Day director told Variety he had to cut $25 million by shaving down shooting days and compromising on his initial ambitions for battle sequences.
Midway has been getting mixed reviews from critics, but will most likely appeal to history buffs. According to Box Office Mojo, Midway is opening in 3,242 theaters at the domestic box office, and it's expected to make around $20 million this weekend. Keep up with everything still headed to the big screen this year with our 2019 movie release date schedule.