Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City Director Johannes Roberts says casting Leon S. Kennedy for the reboot was quite an effort. Previous resident Evil The film franchise includes six installments from 2002 to 2016. Those films followed Milla Jovovich’s Alice, and while they incorporated many characters and elements from the games, they were not considered faithful adaptations. With the reboot, Roberts seeks to bring the origins of the resident Evil games to the big screen, starting with a new slate and new actors in an attempt to make a more faithful adaptation.
Some of the fan-favorite characters featured in the film include Claire Redfield (Kaya Scodelario), Chris Redfield (Robbie Amell), Jill Valentine (Hannah John-Kamen), and Albert Wesker (Tom Hopper). Another major character that fans are eager to see is Leon S. Kennedy. Leon has appeared in numerous games, including Resident Evil 4, which many consider the best of the franchise. The role of Leon went to Avan Jogia, whose recent films include Zombieland: double tap and 2019 Axis. However, finding the perfect Lion seems to have been a long and arduous process.
In a recent interview with IGN, Roberts talked about the casting process for Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City and what it took to find the right actor. Audiences know Leon as a funny but tough character, and according to Roberts, he was “Really quite a complicated role.” Still, it would appear that the director knew that Jogia was perfect for the role when he saw her audition. Check out what Roberts had to say below:
“We must have seen so many people, it was really quite a complicated role due to the balance of humor and exhaustion. Then Avan read and I thought he was the one.”
Given that Leon is a beloved character, the long casting process shows how much Roberts wanted to get it right. However, this is not the first live representation of León, as it happened in 2012. Resident Evil: Retribution. That movie saw Leon, played by Johann Urb, working to help Alice de Jovovich escape from a testing facility. The character was then quickly killed off between movies, which most fans saw as an annoying waste of the character. However, some were never happy with his performance in the film.
The character has also appeared in several resident Evil Animated projects outside of Leon’s only live-action appearance. Resident Evil: Damnation, Resident Evil: Vendetta, and even the recent Netflix series Resident Evil: Infinite Darkness I’ve seen Leon in lead roles, and the character was much more in line with what audiences wanted to see of Leon. With Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City Spending so much time in the casting process, it would seem that Roberts is aware of the previous reviews live and wants to avoid them. Since footage of the reboot has yet to be shared, audiences will still have to wait a bit to see if Jogia is, in fact, perfect for the role. Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City It is currently scheduled for release on November 24, 2021.
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