Sunday 25 August 2019

Jason Statham: A straight-up fist fight gets a little tedious

The actor reprises his role of Deckard Shaw in the new Fast & Furious spin-off.

Jason Statham plays Deckard Shaw in the latest Fast and Furious spin-off film (Matt Crossick/PA)
Jason Statham plays Deckard Shaw in the latest Fast and Furious spin-off film (Matt Crossick/PA)

By Laura Harding, PA Senior Entertainment Correspondent

Jason Statham has said he gets “apprehensive” about fight scenes with props but embraces them because “straight up fist fights get a little tedious”.

The action star reprises his role of Deckard Shaw in the new Fast & Furious spin-off Hobbs & Shaw, in which he stars opposite Dwayne Johnson.

The film sees him perform an elaborate fight scene using a champagne bottle as a weapon and Statham told PA: “I always get a little bit apprehensive with props, they just stack them all up and go ‘You are going to bash someone with a toaster, there is the saucepan for the bullet catch, there is the champagne bottle’, it’s like Generation Game, pick your prizes.

“Props have been a thing of my action movie physical fights for many, many years. I’ve wrapped people up with hoses, I’ve hit them with everything you could put your hands on.

“It’s just part of the fun, you know? Just a straight-up fist fight gets a little tedious, the more we can inject the comedy and the fun of having these props, it makes it really good.”

Statham, who is best known for his hard-man roles in films such as Snatch, The Expendables and The Transporter, added that he embraced the chance to expand on his character in the Fast & Furious films.

He said: “I came in in the shadows for Part 7, I did a very small tag on 6, didn’t have a lot to say in part 7, just came in and wanted to kill everybody and then we get to learn a little more about him in part 8.

“So Deckard Shaw was certainly someone that we could pull back the curtain and have a look at, focus down on what he stands for because there has been this misconception that he’s just this ruthless bad guy and we get to know that he’s not exactly that.

“It’s the same with the Hobbs character, the pair of us really had a lot of on screen fireworks that really made sense to go and expand out on what story we had to put them in.”

The film also marks the brief return of Dame Helen Mirren as Shaw’s mother Magdalene and Statham mourned that she is not in the film more.

He said: “There is never enough, it’s always the same, it’s like we need a lot more of Helen, we really do and it’s always going to be that way.

“I think that is the flavour of what she brings, she is so memorable in a small or large dose, we get to really just embrace what she can bring and I’m a very lucky man.”

Fast & Furious: Hobbs & Shaw is released in UK cinemas on August 1.

PA Media

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