You may remember, way back in the paleolithic dawn of February 2015, there was a minor fracas over Power/Rangers, a fun send-up of “dark and gritty” reboots of children’s entertainment that was better at the whole “dark and gritty” thing than most of the serious-minded pop culture it was spoofing. At the time, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers’ parent company Saban unwisely tried to suppress the video, leading to a backlash that garnered the video a ton of attention. Director Joseph Kahn and producer Adi Shankar earned a lot of goodwill, pointing out that the endeavor was not-for-profit and making reasonable arguments about free speech.
Well, now it seems producer Shankar has a film project in the works, and while it has the sound of a potentially very silly but also maybe fun movie, he’s really doubled down on the self-aggrandizement. The press release The A.V. Club received touts the subject line “Rebel Filmmaker, Adi Shankar (Dredd, Power/Rangers), Announces His Directorial Debut “Adi Shankar’s Gods and Secrets’ [sic].” Someone whose Q rating isn’t exactly above Ridley Scott maybe shouldn’t put his own name into the title of his feature debut, but whatever. Let’s explore this press release further:
Adi Shankar has taken his rebel filmmaking techniques to a whole new level with his directorial debut, “Adi Shankar’s Gods and Secrets.” Shankar has truly found his calling by being the voice of the digital generation.
It’s the job of press releases to hype their subject matter, but it might be jumping the gun a little to call someone “the voice of the digital generation” when their career thus far has mostly consisted of producing Hollywood fare like Lone Survivor and A Walk Among The Tombstones and a couple of fun digital shorts. We’re not saying Shankar wrote this himself, but take a look at his press photo, and acknowledge that it’s at least a possibility:
All this being said, the movie itself could go either way. The synopsis of the film suggests a Watchmen-esque tale that “explores the darker ramifications of a world with superheroes, both on the people they protect, and the heroes themselves. Tragedy has struck the Guardians of Justice, and in its aftermath secrets are revealed, lives are changed, and the war to end all wars begins. Death, secrets, and lies threaten to tear the Guardians of Justice apart, and the world with them.” The cast is a strange amalgam of esteemed (Jane Seymour), wrestler (WWE’s Diamond Dallas Page), Twilighters (Kellan Lutz, Jackson Rathbone), and Denise Richards. One thing is for sure: Good or bad, you will know this was an Adi Shankar film, because it’s right there in the title.