The new Mortal Kombat film is definitely starting to pick up steam, as it has been officially confirmed that Josh Lawson (Superstore, House of Lies) has closed a deal to play Kano, an underworld crime boss with a history with Sonya Blade and her partner Jax. Speaking of Sonya, Jessica McNamee (The Meg) is in final negotiations to star as the Special Forces commando, while Lewis Tan (Wu Assassins, Deadpool 2) is set to play an undisclosed lead character (I’m putting my money on him being Scorpion). They will join previously announced stars Joe Taslim (The Night Comes For Us), Mehcad Brooks (Supergirl), Tadanobu Asano (Thor: Ragnarok), Ludi Lin (Power Rangers) and newcomer Sisi Stringer as Sub-Zero, Jax, Raiden, Liu Kang and Mileena.
In the various franchise media, Kano is depicted as a sadistic, calculating mercenary and leader of the international Black Dragon crime cartel. Hr is typically responsible for the deaths of some of Sonya and Jax’s comrades, leading to their lengthy feud with him. He participated in the first tournament in order to loot Shang Tsung’s treasure vault, but found himself reluctantly teaming up with Sonya to survive against the denizens of Outworld. When the two were captured and imprisoned in the tournament’s aftermath, Jax journeyed into Outworld to rescue Sonya, inadvertently freeing Kano in the process. Jax recieved bionic implants following Shao Khan’s invasion of Earthrealm, which have become his most recognizable attribute. Joel Edgerton (Red Sparrow, Bright) and WWE star Trish Stratus (Gridlocked) were rumored to be in consideration for Kano and Sonya Blade some time back, but the studio seems to be skewing younger for this iteration of the franchise, which could be both a good (longevity) or a bad thing (gravitas). Simon McQuoid is making his directorial debut from a script by Greg Russo, who’s also working on scripts for adaptations of Saint’s Row, F.E.A.R., Space Invaders and the Resident Evil reboot. There’s still no official word on the plot, but the film is reportedly going to be hard R-rated, and will include Fatalities.
With filming set to begin very soon, there’s still a few mainstays that need to be cast; which I’m betting will also include Kitana, Johnny Cage, Shang Tsung and Goro if they want to stick to the formula of the first game and the 1995 film (forgetting the fact that Jax was absent from both).
Mortal Kombat is currently eyeing a March 5, 2021, release.