Ryan Reynolds Saves the Future and His Younger Self in Netflix's The Adam Project
After the massive success of comedy-action flick Free Guy, which earned 300 million dollars in theater sales and garnered critical acclaim for its clever script and immersive human to AI concepts, director Shawn Levy’s next project is sci-fi drama The Adam Project. It stars Ryan Reynolds, who was also the lead in Free Guy, as well as Guardians of the Galaxy’s ass-kicker Zoe Saldana.
A film about undoing the past, learning to live with the present, and looking forward to the future, The Adam Project was first pitched by production company Skydance and produced by Reynolds’ own company, Maximum Effort. The Deadpool actor knew that a movie about a pilot going back in time to save both his father, played by Marvel Cinematic Universe stalwart Mark Ruffalo, and Reynolds’ younger self, played by up-and-comer Walker Scobell, is a story that would resonate with every generation.
During a virtual interview, Reynolds had nothing but praise for Scobell, who he said was “emotional, quippy, hilarious, and sharp-witted.”
“In a scene where it's just incredible stunts and action, he was always ready to go and that's something you don’t find anywhere these days,” Reynolds added.
“I just watched Deadpool way too many times,” Scobell deadpanned.
Saldana, who plays Reynolds’ wife Laura in the film, said she felt Adam’s perspective personally and was fully invested with the father-son relationship aspect of the movie.
“It's never too late to make amends with the past, to make peace with your past, to grow from your past so you don't have to bump with the same adversities,” she said.
As for learning the lessons in time travel for The Adam Project, Saldana cautioned that “some things are better left untouched.”
“If [everyone] had that opportunity to see what the future would hold, I think that would impact who we are as people today as a great deal,” she said.
Reynolds and Saldana became visibly excited when talk turned to the Group Effort Initiative, an organization created by Reynolds himself that helps black, indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) as well as members of marginalized communities tell the stories they want to tell.
“(The Group Effort Initiative)’s design is not a charity,” Reynolds said. “Its design is to create and tell better stories. And when you diversify perspectives in your storytelling, both behind the screen and in front of the screen, you are telling better stories.” Saldana, meanwhile said she was personally touched by the involvement of young and aspiring film industry hopefuls in the who were able to learn so much during their time in the set as much as they were thrilled to be a part of the movie.
“I can talk until the sun sets and rises all over again about inequities because I am a person of color and I have firsthand experience about that,” she said. “And what Ryan and Blake (Lively, Reynolds wife) are doing by yielding and creating space, even though it’s coming out of their own budget, they’re setting examples for studios and streaming services to take that initiative because they have more and they can actually do it, and (impact change). And it starts with one person to do both.” The actress added that there’s a spectrum of possibilities for members of The Group Initiative and it was The Adam Project that launched those possibilities ever since the first day of filming.
The Adam Project premieres on Netflix on March 11.