We’re not entirely sure who asked for this, but Paramount and Hasbro are rebooting their cinematic G.I. Joe franchise. In what feels like a mix of the original Wolverine solo film and the Marvel Cinematic Universe roadmap, the first new entry in the second go at Joe is Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins. Starring Crazy Rich Asians actor Henry Golding, the film slices into theaters (and only theaters) on July 23rd. Watch the newly revealed first trailer movie.
Like X-Men Origins: Wolverine, the movie will seek to explain the backstory of one of G.I. Joe’s most beloved characters, the silent ninja warrior named Snake Eyes. Fans have rarely if ever seen the black-masked hero’s face, but don’t worry, Golding gets all the screen time in the first trailer. Amongst a number of action set pieces (cue motorcycle chase, sword fight in the rain against a backdrop of neon lights), Golding’s Snake Eyes comes across other Joe regulars like archnemesis Storm Shadow (Andrew Koji), Cobra operative The Baroness (Úrsula Corberó), and G.I. Joe counter intelligence specialist Scarlett (Samara Weaving).
Coming from established comic book movie director Robert Schwentke (R.I.P.D., RED) and writer Evan Spiliotopoulos (Beauty and the Beast), Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins is set to be the launchpad for a whole new G.I. Universe (Joeniverse? G.I.U.? We’ll work on it…). The last entry in the franchise was 2013’s G.I. Joe: Retaliation from Jon M. Chu, which followed Stephen Sommers’ G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra from 2009. A direct follow-up called Ever Vigilant has long been rumored with director D.J. Caruso attached, and series producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura has said that script is still being developed.
However, as Golding told Entertainment Weekly, the franchise could really go anywhere from Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins. “Having this solo movie, we get to set the precedent for where [Snake’s] story leads,” he said. “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.”
Watch the Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins trailer below, and get ready for a post-vaccination summer of comparing this film to the MCU’s September release Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.