It’s hard to tell what’s what when it comes to celebrity press. What’s real or smokescreen, or what is a negotiating tactic?
Frank Grillo has become the staple of Universal Pictures’ The Purge franchise. While the introductory film was hugely disappointing, Grillo helped deliver a mean-street ’80s vibe to the excellent sequel, Anarchy. And even though this past summer’s Election Year wasn’t very good, it was still a huge box office success. Thus, Universal will continue to move forth, possibly with a television series. But will Grillo?
“It is what it is, but it’s great. It’s fun. After ‘Anarchy’, Universal called me and said, ‘You’ve got a franchise. We’re gonna continue with this, if you wanna do this.’ I was like, ‘Yeah, this is great!’ And so, when ‘Election Year’ was even more successful, they were like, ‘Let’s keep doing this!’ I was like, ‘Maybe. I think I might be done, but you should keep doing it!’ But, I love it!” Grillo told Collider. “[James] DeMonaco, who wrote and directed all of them, reminds me a lot of (Kingdom creator/showrunner) Byron [Balasco], in the sense that he so understands the world he’s created that you just follow him. For an actor, that’s fun.”
If you were to remove Grillo from either Anarchy or Election Year, I’m not quite sure they’d be worth anything. He truly is the power behind both films and it’s going to be hard for Universal to find another actor of his caliber willing to jump into the fourth film of a franchise. I’m sure he knows this and it’s just a way for him to publicly say, “Pay me or no way.” Plus, if he does decide to return he’s a goddamn hero.
If only he had 24 hours to decide…