'Resident Evil: Retribution' Cast, Director on How the Franchise is Getting 'Bigger and Better'
Milla Jovovich, Li Bingbing and helmer Paul W.S. Anderson spoke with THR at their film's red carpet premiere.
Video game addicts and screaming fans awaited the arrival of the Resident Evil: Retribution cast Wednesday, including lead actress Milla Jovovich (Alice), Oded Fehr (Carlos Olivera), Boris Kodjoe (Luther West), Kevin Durand (Barry Barton) and Shawn Roberts (Albert Wesker), at the film's Hollywood premiere.
Inspired by the survival video game Resident Evil, producer Jeremy Bolt said of the franchise's fifth film, "We bring in new characters from the game, and in this version of it, we’ve made it a much bigger film. [Retribution’s] more global, it’s got more gravitas, it’s got bigger action, it’s really, really beautiful.”
Jovovich feels her character has grown in this film with the addition of an onscreen daughter (The Orphan's Aryana Engineer). “[Anderson] wrote a part for a housewife in the movie with a child, and I thought that was really interesting because not only did it give me new challenges, but it also makes Alice more relatable to people and shows people a different side of her that we wouldn’t have seen in the other movies,” she told The Hollywood Reporter.
Li Bingbing, who plays spy Ada Wong, said despite the assumption that the battle scenes (which she requested more of from Anderson) were the most challenging part in making the film, it actually was overcoming a language barrier between English and her native Chinese. The cast trained for nearly a year to master the martial arts showcased in the epic battle scenes.
Director Paul W.S. Anderson noted that keeping fans committed and interested in the franchise is strategic. “We’ve always tried to make a different movie each time around. I think a franchise really dies when it repeats itself," he said. "So I’ve really tried to push the franchise to deliver something fresh and exciting for the audience each time. … Bigger and better, and I think we succeeded.”
After the 3D screening, a posh afterparty was thrown at WP24, Wolfgang Puck’s lounge that overlooks downtown Los Angeles from atop the 24th floor of the Ritz Carlton Hotel. Guests enjoyed a free photo booth, an array of hors d'oeuvres and a view that rose above the city lights.
Resident Evil: Retribution opens nationwide Sept. 14.