Cinephiles the world over are still waiting with bated breath for Nicolas Winding Refn’s The Neon Demon, the Drive auteur’s eerie look at a sinister group of supermodels in the L.A. underworld, but now that the helmer has finished shooting the Elle Fanning starrer, he’s already looking to the future with regard to which project he wants to take on next.
Speaking with Collider, Refn revealed that his next project will likely be called The Avenging Silence – and it will bear similarities to his past films Valhalla Rising, Drive and Only God Forgives.
The film, which Refn has been planning to do for a while, will be set in Tokyo and put a distinctive spin on the spy genre. The director wasn’t forthcoming with details about the plot, but The Avenging Silence will again find Refn focusing on a male protagonist similar to the ones in his most famous movies:
“Yeah, it’s basically a character that appears in my other movies that will now appear again. Having done The Neon Demon, which was predominantly women protagonists, but the character that Mads [Mikkelsen] plays in Valhalla Rising, Ryan [Gosling] plays him in Drive or Vithaya [Pansringarm] in Only God Forgives, I want to make a new movie with that character.”
The helmer has spoken before about the connections between his films, and the protagonists of Valhalla Rising, Drive and Only God Forgives all perpetuate a certain perception of reticent, violent masculinity. Learning that Refn is planning to add another brooding antihero to that already-impressive lineup of characters is most exciting, particularly as he comes off a creative breath of fresh air in the female-dominated Neon Demon.
There are few modern filmmakers who beg the word ‘auteur,’ but Refn’s neon-soaked tableaus and immersive underworld settings have certainly earned him that distinction.