Every actor who eventually takes the mantle of James Bond submits an “audition tape” in one way or another. For recently retired screen spy Daniel Craig, it was Matthew Vaughn’s Layer Cake. For Pierce Brosnan, it was a combination of The Fourth Protocol and Remington Steele. Dev Patel, on the other hand, may very well have his with Monkey Man.
Co-written, directed, and starring the Green Knight actor himself, this kinetic rollercoaster of a revenge tale that’s been described as “John Wick in Mumbai” had initially been acquired by Netflix. But after Jordan Peele (Get Out, Us, Nope) previewed the film, he negotiated to buy it off the streaming giant through his Monkeypaw Productions banner to give it the theatrical release it deserves.
On top of all this, Patel’s directorial debut features fight choreography from Brahim Chab — a veteran of the action game who’s famously collaborated with heavyweight names like Jackie Chan, Donnie Yen, Scott Adkins, and Jean-Claude Van Damme.
Monkey Man — which follows an ex-felon who “struggles to adjust to a world of corporate greed and eroding spiritual values” — also stars Neil Blomkamp muse Sharlto Copley, Pitobash, Vipin Sharma, Sikandar Kher, Sobhita Dhulipala, Ashwini Kalsekarm, Adithi Kalkunte, and Makarand Deshpande.
As for a release date, Monkey Man hits theatres on April 5th, 2024 — check out the brutal first trailer above and the official synopsis below:
“Inspired by the legend of Hanuman, an icon embodying strength and courage, Monkey Man stars Patel as Kid: an anonymous young man who ekes out a meagre living in an underground fight club where, night after night, wearing a gorilla mask, he is beaten bloody by more popular fighters for cash. After years of suppressed rage, Kid discovers a way to infiltrate the enclave of the city’s sinister elite. As his childhood trauma boils over, his mysteriously scarred hands unleash an explosive campaign of retribution to settle the score with the men who took everything from him.”