In something of a major shake-up, Netflix has scooped up the rights to Red Notice, an original blockbuster thriller that originally sold to Universal Pictures last year. Instead, the original concept, which had Dwayne Johnson and Gal Gadot locked down to star already, is shifting over to the world's largest streaming service, and they're bringing Ryan Reynolds along for the ride, as the Deadpool star has also joined the cast. This now makes for one of Netflix's biggest financial commitments ever.
According to a new report, the movie will cost Netflix $130 million to produce. That includes a hefty $20 million salary for Dwayne Johnson, in addition to the surely large salaries for both Gal Gadot and Ryan Reynolds, who anchor the Wonder Woman and Deadpool franchises, respectively. Rawson Marshall Thurber, who previously worked with Johnson on Central Intelligence and Skyscraper, is set to write and direct the globetrotting thriller. Here's what Johnson had to say in a statement.
"With Red Notice, our goal at Seven Bucks Productions was to break down traditional barriers and create a true global event for the audience. Netflix has illustrated that they are the perfect partners to accomplish this goal. I admire the ambition of Netflix to become one of the biggest movie studios in the world. Their original content generates critical acclaim and invites full collaboration on every level of production.
Their unbridled enthusiasm for Red Notice is equally matched by their commitment to entertaining audiences on an international scale. As the landscape of movies, distribution and audience consumption continues to evolve, our Seven Bucks focus is to continue to find the best platform and partners to thrive in this ever changing environment.
Director/writer Rawson Thurber has delivered a dynamic script that me and my co-stars and partners-in-heist, Gal Gadot and Ryan Reynolds, can't wait to shoot. The fun we're gonna have making Red Notice, but more importantly, the fun the worldwide audience will have watching it in 190+ countries, all at the same moment."
While full plot details are still being kept under wraps, it's said that Red Notice will be an international action/thriller that centers on the pursuit of the most wanted art thief in the world, taking place across multiple countries. Last year, the project was subject to a major bidding war between studios. Universal won out at the time, but Netflix was the runner up. However, following a recent meeting with Universal, the filmmakers reportedly sensed some hesitation and, using a clause in their contract, shifted the project to Netflix, after some complex dealmaking was handled. Netflix's Head of Film Scott Stuber had this to say.
"Rawson wrote a spectacular globetrotting action-adventure film. We can't wait to bring this story and this Dream Team of movie stars, Dwayne, Ryan and Gal, to audiences around the world."
Interestingly, this comes following a report that Netflix is looking to crack down on their expensive productions, as certain projects, such as Triple Frontier, didn't quite deliver the pay off they were expecting for the money spent. Red Notice will head into production in 2020, but a release date has not yet been set by the streaming service. This news was previously reported by Deadline.