Ryan Gosling Talks Gangster Squad And His Next Project With Nicolas Winding Refn

Finally, audiences have started to take a shine to Ryan Gosling. While they may have bypassed him in films like Half Nelson or Lars and the Real Girl, this year he’s pulling a hat trick with three solid releases showing his range. He was a scene-stealer in the commercial hit Crazy, Stupid, Love, he was a force of nature as the hero in Drive, and he’s got the lead in George Clooney’s third directorial effort, the political drama The Ides of March, opening on October 7th.

Recently, during a press day for Ides, The Playlist got a few bites about his upcoming projects The Gangster Squad and Only God Forgives.

Gangster Squad comes from Zombieland director Ruben Fleischer and is an epic story set in the 1950s between the LAPD and the mob.

“It got a great cast,” Gosling says. “Ruben’s directing and Sean Penn plays Mickey Cohen. Josh Brolin is the lead and Anthony Mackie, Giovanni Ribisi, Robert Patrick, Emma Stone, Michael Pena. Nick Nolte just signed on. A lot of great actors.”

Regarding the shift from comedy to drama and about the choice of Fleischer as director, Gosling remarked, “It’s very, very different tonally [from his other films] and I think he’s doing a great job so far…He’s handling it really well.”

With Only God Forgives, Gosling will reunite with Nicolas Winding Refn who directed one of this year’s most buzzed about projects, Drive. Shooting will commence in January. “We’re shooting chronologically. We’ll be in Thailand for five months.” The role Gosling will be playing requires a lot of prep, so he’s training in Muay Thai. “It’s been painful. I like it a lot.”

The story involves a British gangster who seeks vengeance on a Thai ex-cop, but if you’ve seen Drive and hear that Gosling says Only God Forgives is the strangest thing he’s ever read and it’s only going to get stranger, then you know it’s not a simple tale of revenge.

Here’s that film’s most recent synopsis:

“Julian lives in exile in Bangkok where he runs a Thai boxing club as a front for the family’s drugs smuggling operation. When Julian’s brother Billy is killed their mother, Jenna, arrives in the city. She wants revenge and forces Julian to find the killer. Julian’s contacts in the criminal underworld lead him directly to The Angel of Vengeance, a retired police officer who knows everything and who is both Judge and Punisher. Jenna demands that Julian kill The Angel of Vengeance, an act that will cost him dearly.”

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Source: The Playlist