Martin Campbell is a director who knows how to handle action, and his latest film Memory is further proof of that. The thriller, which is out in theaters this weekend, follows a hitman (Liam Neeson, Taken) with a conscience and a growing case of Alzheimer’s who decides to take vengeance on those who tried to make him betray his moral code.
Having previously directed some of the most iconic James Bond films in recent memory, Casino Royale and Goldeneye, Campbell was the perfect man to helm a nuanced yet adventure-filled Neeson vehicle. And the star power doesn’t end there, with Monica Bellucci and Guy Pearce portraying the assassin’s antagonists in the story.
Campbell spoke to Screen Rant about wanting to work with Neeson, shared the process of remaking the original Belgian film for American audiences, and even revealed some of his thoughts on his divisive Green Lantern film.
Screen Rant: Congrats on Memory coming out.
Can you walk me through just how you and Memory came together? What grabbed you about this story? How did it get started?
Liam Neeson is fantastic. But were you surprised you two haven’t worked together yet? It feels like a match made, you know?
Is there anything that surprised you about working with him? Did he the anything he did that you didn’t expect?
I was lucky to interview him. I just love that, instead of just answering the questions, he tells stories with it, too.
And Guy Pearce, I almost didn’t recognize him.
What would you say were the biggest changes you made from the original to your version of the story?
You’ve introduced two James Bonds and done The Mask of Zorro, one of the most beloved movies. What have you found appeals most to get you in the director’s chair?
What was the biggest challenge in making Memory? Was there a moment where you were like, “Gosh.”
You talk about there’s a journey to even get the films made? Is there something that you really have your eye on that you would love to direct, but it just hasn’t happened yet?
Would you ever do another superhero film or anything like that?
Well, you got Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds together.
When Alex, an expert assassin, refuses to complete a job for a dangerous criminal organization, he becomes a target. FBI agents and Mexican intelligence are brought in to investigate the trail of bodies, leading them closer to Alex. With the crime syndicate and FBI in hot pursuit, Alex has the skills to stay ahead, except for one thing: he is struggling with severe memory loss, affecting his every move. Alex must question his every action and whom he can ultimately trust.
Check out our previous Memory interviews with Monica Bellucci and Liam Neeson.
More: Memory & 9 Other Must-Watch Liam Neeson Movies For New Fans
Memory is currently out in theaters.