1. A quick synopsis
For those unfamiliar with the film:
In Red Dawn, a city in Washington state awakens to the surreal sight of foreign paratroopers dropping from the sky – shockingly, the U.S. has been invaded and their hometown is the initial target. Quickly and without warning, the citizens find themselves prisoners and their town under enemy occupation. Determined to fight back, a group of young patriots seek refuge in the surrounding woods, training and reorganizing themselves into a guerilla group of fighters. Taking inspiration from their high school mascot, they call themselves the Wolverines, banding together to protect one another, liberate their town from its captors, and take back their freedom.
2. The movie is packed with an (unexpected) all-star cast
When the film originally cast Chris Hemsworth, he was only known for his opening scene in Star Trek. Meanwhile, Josh Hutcherson was barely known outside of a few Disney films. He wasn’t cast as Peeta until after filming finished for Red Dawn.
Other cast members include Josh Peck (The Wackness), Adrianne Palicki (Friday Night Lights, G.I. Joe: Retaliation), Isabel Lucas (Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, The Pacific), Connor Cruise (Tom’s son) and Jeffrey Dean Morgan (Watchmen, Grey’s Anatomy).
3. Speaking of Chris…
The actor may look unfamiliar to those who only know him from Thor. The film was shot in 2009 - years before he would get jacked up to play the Avengers superhero. While he has a much slimmer profile, he still is a whole lot of hunk. Even Josh Peck agrees: “He exudes masculinity.”
4. The cast received military training
The cast trained at Michigan Tactical AirSoft Center (MTAC). The MTAC delivers “hard hitting, effective training experiences for Law Enforcement, Military, and Security professionals alike.”
5. There’s a new enemy in town
Unlike the original, the enemy is no longer Chinese. After filming “there was the thought that the Chinese own most of the companies making movies and that maybe it wasn’t the best idea in the world,” Josh Hutcherson told USA Today. Filmakers digitally altered the enemy at hand. Our gang of heros will face invaders from North Korea.
6. The film was delayed because of the studio’s financial problems
When a movie gets shelved and/or is released it usually spells trouble. But the delay for Red Dawn was due to financial problems at MGM, the movie’s distributor. The studio was in major debt and ultimately filed for bankruptcy - shelving any major film releases.
(Originally shot in 2009, the movie will finally be released Thanksgiving of this year.)
7. How violent will it be?
While the movie is rated PG-13, it’s unclear how violent it will be. The original was the first movie to receive a PG-13 rating and was considered, at the time, to have the most violent acts in a film - 134 per hour or approximately 2.23 per minute.
9. Also, there’s awesome fan art
Which may be slightly cooler than the official movie poster.
Production images and poster courtesy of Open Road Pictures.