It’s a balmy 85 degrees and I’m sitting in a loading dock in San Juan, Puerto Rico. I’m surrounded by multi-colored shipping crates, stacked like tremendous LEGOs.
A Humvee moves across the pavement, and, in a flash, a ball of fire ignites and billows out with an awe-inspiring blast.
The scene cuts and resets, the Humvee returning to its starting point and the fire gone without a trace.
“You should have been here yesterday,” someone on the crew laughs, “That was the REALLY big explosion.”
All around me is the world of The Losers, a bigger-than-life ensemble action adaptation of the Vertigo comic book series. The man calling the shots–whose telling the tremendous LEGOs when to explode and when not to–is Sylvain White (Stomp the Yard), a man who knows his way around a comic book; the first impression of seeing his set is that, if nothing else, he’s got the cast and the costumes to a tee.
“The Losers,” which ran from 2003 to 2006, is, not unlike “Sandman,” an in-name-only re-imagining of a classic DC Comics property. The series, authored by Andy Diggle with art by Jock, tells the story of a band of Special Forces operatives who are betrayed by their CIA handler (known only as Max) and who come together as a team out for revenge, pitting their own expertise against the CIA in the hopes of winning their lives back.
The head of the team is Frank Clay, brought to life by Jeffrey Dean Morgan, coming right off a major comic book project with last year’s Watchmen. At the moment, he’s dressed in his straight-from-the-comic black suit and white shirt and trapped inside the Humvee, captured by enemy forces while, all around, his team works to rescue him.
Chris Evans, also a comic book adaptation veteran, is Jensen, the computer expert of the group who, in a nearby setup, works with the mysterious Cowboy-hatted sniper, Cougar (Ã“scar Jaenada) to save fellow teammate and pilot Pooch (White’s “good luck charm,” Columbus Short).
Preparing for a climatic confrontation with Clay at the same port is Zoe Saldana, starring as Aisha, a heavily tattooed and pierced assassin who, though not an original member of the Special Forces team, has joined with the Losers to get her own revenge against Max.
Unfortunately out for the day is Roque (Idris Elba), Clay’s number two and the final member of the expert team.
The loading dock, doubling here for the Port of Los Angeles, is just one of many exotic locations that the Warner Bros. production has called home the past few weeks. Despite the seeming nonchalance of the day’s explosions, safety and security here is a very tight ship. The real-life port, now operated by Homeland Security, is almost at the legal maximum of civilian personnel, including the crew and our small group of visiting reporters.
Between takes, the whole area is abuzz with activity. One scene shoots while another sets up and White moves deftly between monitors as us reporters catch the actors between shots. You can read the interviews using the links below. Warner Bros. has also provided us with 6 new character banners, which you can check out here!
Source: Silas Lesnick