New York City politics is often a hard thing to navigate, let alone when you start bringing elections, property development and the police department into the equation, so leave it to Allen Hughes, one half of the Hughes Brothers–who broke into the movie scene with the ’90s crime thrillers Menace II Society and Dead Presidents–to try and tackle such a lofty subject with his first solo directing gig, Broken City.
More of a white collar suspense crime-thriller than the type of street-level action crime thrillers the Hughes Brothers were known for, it stars Mark Wahlberg as Billy Taggart, a former New York police detective who was saved from a prison sentence after shooting a perp by the citys mayor, played by Russell Crowe. Seven years later, the mayor is in the middle of a heated mayoral race against a bright newcomer (Barry Pepper) and he calls upon Billy to help him keep an eye on his wife (Catherine Zeta-Jones) who he believes is cheating on him. Theres a lot more to the story than that, something Billy finds out the further he investigates the mayor’s wife’s dalliances, but saying more would ruin what one suspects would be better learned through watching the film.
ComingSoon.net caught up with Hughes earlier this week and in the video interview below, we spoke to the filmmaker about:
* Making a movie about New York politics and how he found the script
* Why he and brother Albert decided to make separate movies after The Book of Eli
* How he decided that post-apocalyptic action movies aren’t for him
* How Mark Wahlberg was his first choice for Bill Taggart
* How having him as a producer helped him get financing and other things
* Casting Russell Crowe as the mayor and the intensive research they did into former corrupt mayors
* Figuring out how to set the story as a period piece that feels timeless by creating an “alternate universe New York”
* Talking about Atticus Ross’ score and how Hughes first discovered him for his show “Touching Evil”
* Working without his brother and if there was any time he missed having him around
* Some details about his remake of the Korean movie A Bittersweet Life (directed by Kim Jee-woon, whose English language debut The Last Stand opens this weekend against Broken City
Broken City opens nationwide on Friday, January 18.