Richard Linklater’s Hit Man: Everything we know so far 

Hit Man Poster. Image via IMDB.
Hit Man Poster. Image via IMDB.

In 2001, a Texas Monthly article titled Hit Man caught the attention of filmmaker Richard Linklater, known for movies like Boyhood and the Before Trilogy. The article detailed the astonishing story of Gary Johnson, a man who posed as a contract killer in Houston but was secretly working with law enforcement. Linklater, a Texas native, was captivated by the colorful narrative woven by writer Skip Hollandsworth.

Linklater's fascination with the story led to the creation of his upcoming film, Hit Man, set to premiere at the Venice International Film Festival. The movie, co-written by Linklater and actor Glen Powell, takes an unexpected fictional twist based on a small moment from the original article, giving it elements of noir, comedy, romance, and thriller.


What is Hit Man about?

At the heart of this tale is a complex character played by Powell, who delves into the world of undercover. Johnson, described by Hollandsworth as a master of disguise and character creation, skillfully adapts to his client's needs, all while recording incriminating conversations that lead to arrests.

In the movie "Hit Man", the character of Powell, Gary, has to balance multiple personas, including that of Ron, a charming personality he adopts to interact with a woman who wants her husband dead. As their lives become more intertwined, the film delves into the themes of deception and identity.

Linklater and Powell found inspiration from actual sting operation recordings, revealing a cast of peculiar clients with dark intentions. These characters, portrayed in a matter-of-fact manner, added a darkly humorous and intriguing layer to the story.


A Star-Studded Production

The movie stars Glen Powell and Adria Arjona in leading roles, with a supporting cast that includes Austin Amelio, Retta, and Molly Bernard. The film, produced by Linklater, Michael Blizzard, Michael Costigan, and Jason Bateman, promises to be a genre-bending experience that blurs the lines between crime and comedy.

For Powell, the project represents a unique opportunity to play a character who is constantly playing characters himself. The film's intricate plot and character dynamics challenged the actor to differentiate between Gary and Ron, adding depth to his performance.

Hit Man is not Linklater's first foray into adapting Texas Monthly articles into films. His previous work, Bernie demonstrated his ability to transform intriguing real-life stories into captivating cinema. This movie continues this tradition by taking audiences on a rollercoaster ride through the world of crime, identity, and undercover deception.

As the film gears up for its premiere at the Venice International Film Festival, it marks another milestone in Linklater's storied career and adds to Glen Powell's growing list of accomplishments. Together, they bring to life a tale of crime, humor, and the complexities of human identity in Hit Man.

Fans of the genre or the director won't want to miss it when it hits theatres worldwide on September 4th, 2023.

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Edited by Krutik Jain