Chad Stahelski, stuntman and director of all four John Wick movies, will be taking a break from his Keanu-packed schedule to make a Rainbow Six movie. Called Rainbow, it’ll be based not on any of the recent games, but on the original Tom Clancy novel.
That is the same story the first Rainbow Six game was based on, however, so fans of that 1998 tactical shooter may get a thrill seeing it recreated on the big screen. Michael B Jordan is starring, and it’ll serve as a follow-up to his 2021 film Without Remorse, which was also based on a Tom Clancy novel.
It’ll be Stahelski’s first non-John Wick movie as director, and while bone-crunching action is pretty much guaranteed, I do question what his approach to the story might be. Both the novel and that first game are essentially about the heroic CIA fighting an evil cabal of environmentalists. Tom Clancy stories trend towards right-wing fantasy at the best of times, but Rainbow Six is particularly out of touch in 2023, and I don’t know if the guy who invented magic assassin hotels is the one to give it some necessary nuance.
The previous film in the series didn’t set the world alight, either. Without Remorse was originally intended for a theatrical release, but ended up heading straight to streaming on Amazon Prime, and was greeted by mixed reviews. Michael B Jordan’s performance was praised, but the story was dubbed generic and formulaic by many.
Regardless, we’ll find out soon if this sequel can hit the mark, and at least producer Akiva Goldsman will be relieved that the project is now heading into production. He first announced plans for an adaption in 2017, with Ryan Reynolds attached to play the lead role in the wake of the success of the first Deadpool film. Best not to imagine what sarcastic one-liners that version of the character would have quipped out in between executing members of Bad Greenpeace, eh.