Paramount Pictures released first looks at Baroness, Scarlett, Akiro, and a maskless Snake Eyes for their upcoming Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins film.
Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins features a race-swapped Snake Eyes played by Henry Golding. He’s joined by Andrew Koji who plays Storm Shadow.
Úrsula Corberó plays The Baroness, Samara Weaving stars as Scarlett, Haruka Abe is Akiko, Tahehiro Hira is Kenta, and Iko Uwais is Hard Master.
The film’s description states, “Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins stars Henry Golding as Snake Eyes, a tenacious loner who is welcomed into an ancient Japanese clan called the Arashikage after saving the life of their heir apparent.”
It continues, “Upon arrival in Japan, the Arashikage teach Snake Eyes the ways of the ninja warrior while also providing something he’s been longing for: a home
“But, when secrets from his past are revealed, Snake Eyes’ honor and allegiance will be tested – even if that means losing the trust of those closest to him,” the description concludes.
As reported by Entertainment Weekly, not only will Snake Eyes not wear his mask in the upcoming film, but apparently he will also talk. Producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura states, “It was one of the reasons why we picked the backstory [of] ‘How did he become Snake Eyes?’ It allows him to talk, which was very helpful.”
Golding would also comment on the character not wearing his iconic mask, noting that this radical change to the character is beneficial. He said, “I wanted to see something different, and I wanted it to look different, to feel different.”
He added, “To be able to launch a franchise like that, it was just too good to be true — and especially with a character like Snake Eyes about whom a lot of people don’t know too much. They know him as this insane operator that completes missions and is an absolute weapon, but who’s the guy behind the mask and what’s his story?”
Golding previously discussed a maskless Snake Eyes back in January 2020, where he noted seeing him with his mask on “missed things.”
The actor stated, ““It’s an absolute honor to play such an iconic character. He’s probably one of the most recognizable characters created.”
“For us to never really see what is beneath the mask, it always missed something. Snake Eyes was always seen as a weapon, as almost an inanimate object,” he relayed.
Golding continued, “But when you get to see someone’s eyes, you get to see their past, their future, the personality behind that.”
Not only will the character be maskless and talk, but Di Bonaventura also says the film will “answer some questions” about the character.
Entertainment Weekly’s Nick Romano says one of those questions will be, “Like what is Snake’s real name?”
Di Bonaventura adds, “You’ll learn who he is, where he came from.”
Interesting that they tease these questions when Larry Hama, Steve Leialoha, Frank Springer, Andy Mushynsky, George Roussos and Rick Parker answered most of those questions in G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero: Snake Eyes: The Origin.
When Snake Eyes returns from Vietnam, it’s revealed his family was killed in a car accident by a “stoned-out vet.”
With no family in the United States, he leaves for Japan to reunite with Tommy, who had previously offered to let him join the family business.
Other questions like what Snake Eyes’ real name is, doesn’t need an answer as it takes away from the mystique of the character.
As long time G.I. Joe and Snake Eyes writer Chuck Dixon explains, “Larry Hama understood the very simple principle that mystery enhances and engages the reader. The less you know, the more you want to know. And he made Snake Eyes a mystery and by making him a mystery he made him cooler.”
Di Bonaventura does provide some details to EW about Snake Eyes for the film. He says, “His life has now been completely and utterly affected by this scar.” Apparently, the disfigurement will lead him into the arms of the Arashikage as he’s “driven by the wrong motivations.”
While with Arishikage, Snake Eyes will apparently face three trials in order to be in inducted into the clan. Di Bonaventura says, “He’s a burdened man when the movie begins, and in this process, he lifts some of the burden.”
He adds, “A lot of it is an internal search to find the balance in his life. That’s the gravity of the movie. There’s forces pulling him in two different directions.”
As for Snake Eyes’ relationship with Storm Shadow, Golding says, “Storm Shadow and Snake Eyes, their brotherhood/relationship is one of the most famous in the G.I. Joe lore.”
He adds, “They have such an interesting, forever-wavering relationship of hate and love. They love each other as brothers because they’ve been through the same thing.”
As for Cobra and the G.I. Joe oraganization, they will play a less role in the film. Di Bonaventura says, “Both Cobra and G.I. Joe take a back seat to the internal drama of the Arashikage and the character.”
He continued, “They are absolutely an element, but it’s looking at it this way: You meet somebody, watch their struggle, the struggle leads to the world of G.I. Joe and Cobra. It does not start as a G.I. Joe-Cobra movie.”
It starts as an Arashikage movie, a Snake Eyes character arc. You come to realize the Arashikage as they’ve traditionally been are affiliated with the Joes, therefore that brings in Cobra. There is a gradual reveal that there’s a larger world here,” he concluded.
Golding noted that he hopes this film will set the precedent for future films. He says, “Having this solo movie, we get to set the precedent for where [Snake’s] story leads.”
He adds, “It’s phenomenal that Paramount and Hasbro chose to go right to the beginning and really start off with such a story. It gives so much more creative control over where this universe is going. I’m crazy excited to see what we do next.”
Golding had previously stated he hopes the film launches G.I. Joe universe.
“It’s unlike anything people have seen. We are really starting a new timeline, a new franchise with the G.I. Joe universe. So to kick it off with such a distinct and stylized film, I think it really sets the precedent for follow-up movies,” he stated.
He added, “So it’s amazing to be able to tread in sort of unexplored territory. And be able to bring our own styles and Robert’s ideas, and his love for Japanese cinema to the international audience.”
A first trailer for the film will drop during the MTV Movie Awards on May 16th at 9pm.
Don’t miss the #SnakeEyes TRAILER premiere this Sunday, May 16 at 9pm on the @MTVAwards! https://t.co/WdAcvyYIX2
— Snake Eyes (@SnakeEyesMovie) May 14, 2021
What do you make of this first look at Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins?