It’s been a while since the G.I. Joe franchise had some time to shine in a cinematic setting, but that will change soon. Nearly a decade after the release of G.I. Joe: Retaliation, the G.I. Joe film series is being rebooted with Snake Eyes, which stars Crazy Rich Asians actor Henry Golding in the eponymous role. As a result of the current health crisis, we’re still a ways off from Snake Eyes’ arrival, but Golding has provided some cool teases about what’s to come.
Henry Golding appeared in a CCXP panel with writer Larry Hama, who’s quite familiar with Snake Eyes from his time penning numerous G.I. Joe comic book series over the years, including Marvel’s G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero from 1982 to 1994. During the Q&A portion of the panel, Iwo Uwais, who stars as Hard Master in Snake Eyes, asked Golding what fans can expect from the movie. The actor responded thusly:
What fans can kind of expect from Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins is the origin of Snake Eyes. You see his weaknesses, you see his faults, you see him trying to make amends for decisions that perhaps weren’t as savory as you would imagine. You see a bond between brothers, you see the thrill of creating a team and defeating the hurdles in front of you. And you get to really see some damn cool fight scenes, which trained and got our asses kicked for, and they were phenomenal.
Although Ray Park’s version of Snake Eyes was certainly an important character in 2009’s G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra and 2013’s Retaliation, he wasn’t the star of either of those shows, so there wasn’t a whole lot of time to delve into his backstory and motivations. Needless to say that won’t be a problem in the Snake Eyes movie, with Henry Golding explaining how this reboot won’t stray from highlighting both the title character’s strengths and flaws in the midst of all the action. And as one familiar with the G.I. Joe mythology would expect, it’ll also delve deeply into Snake Eyes’ connection to Storm Shadow, who’s being played by Warrior’s Andrew Koji.
Following Henry Golding’s explanation, Larry Hama wanted fans listening to the panel to understand that the martial arts action in Snake Eyes is what makes it stand out from the prior G.I. Joe movies. As he put it:
You have to make it clear to the fans that that’s the thing that makes this different than the other iterations. How these martial arts scenes are so central to the whole fabric of the story. In the other iterations, they were secondary. There was lots of vehicles and explosions and all these things, and the thing about having it be central to the martial arts experience and the conflict is that it brings it all down to the characters, and the characters are the only thing you really care about. I think that’s an important thing that potential viewers of this film should know about.
Outside of Snake Eyes serving as an origin story, no specific plot details have been revealed yet. That said, along with the aforementioned individuals, the movie also stars Peter Mensah as Blind Master, Úrsula Corberó as Baroness and Samara Weaving as Scarlett, and Haruka Abe, Takehiro Hira and Steven Allerick have been cast in undisclosed roles. Red’s Robert Schwentke directed the feature, and Beauty and the Beast’s Evan Spiliotopoulos wrote the screenplay. A follow-up movie to Snake Eyes has reportedly been in the works since last May that will not be a direct sequel, but will build upon the events that unfold in Snake Eyes.