See how the shooting of the new “Major Grom: The Game” with Tikhon Zhiznevsky is going – when the film will be released – May 10, 2023

Photo: Ksenia Ugolnikova / courtesy of Kinopoisk

On the territory of the former weapons (later – tool) factory in Sestroretsk, clapping, shooting and footsteps are heard. The red brick building built in 1914, which was empty for a long time, is bustling with life again: labyrinths with targets have been erected here and a new episode of the film Major Grom: The Game is being filmed, which is expected to premiere in 2024. The film is being produced by Bubble Studios and Plus Studio. A team of police officers led by a major (Tikhon Zhiznevsky) is testing an experimental aircraft, which, according to the plan of its developers, is intended to replace a person in the field of collecting and processing information in the future.

The major’s wits against the power of artificial intelligence

If during the first film the protagonist was haunted by the classic dilemma of police thrillers and detective stories “justice or law”, then in The Game the confrontation between the human mind and artificial intelligence comes to the fore. What can counter the pressure and power of a computer genius known for his conservatism – and his ingenuity – Igor Grom? The ingenious solution, as is often the case, is the simplest.

On set, savvy and technology intertwine seamlessly, effortlessly, and fun.

“Water – psh-psh-psh, fire – poo-poo-poo!” – director Oleg Trofim rumbles into the microphone, helping the actors to complete the picture in their imagination. Participants in the process have to actively use their imagination: the aircraft will take their final form already during editing using computer graphics.

“I see a goal, I see no obstacles: new heroine of Olga Sutulova

An icy insightful look, a confident pose, a steel will, a cold blond: Olga Sutulova, according to the actress herself, likes her heroine, Maria Arkhipova, first of all for her determination. Her image is partly based on the heroine of comics – Police Major Anna Arkhipova. “In the universe of Major Grom, Anna personifies determination and the will to win. She goes through life according to the principle “I see a goal, I see no obstacles,” says the actress. “I like that she is always true only to her principles and goes to the end in everything, although this can not always be called a positive quality in a person.”

The image of Arkhipova is a clear success of the make-up team: it is absolutely impossible to recognize Olga Sutulova in this character. The actress named Rammstein’s compositions as a musical association to the character of her heroine, and Marla Grayson, an adventurer who acts under the motto “the strong is always right”, played by Rosamund Pike in the black comedy “Swindler”, became a visual reference.

Standing at the railing on the second floor of a sun-drenched industrial building, the heroine Sutulova watches the progress of the tests in the company of Grom’s chief Fyodor Prokopenko (Aleksey Maklakov) and foreign entrepreneur, arms dealer August van der Holt (Matvey Lykov, son of Alexander Lykov, will play one of the his first big roles), behind the black glasses of which the Mephistopheles essence of the character is hidden. Intellectual martial arts will be exciting: the straightforwardness and empathy of Igor Grom against the soulless resourcefulness of van der Holt.

Prokopenko openly opposes police reforms. It was he who initiated the duel between his employees and technological devices, offering to determine superiority in a fair fight. “This is a clash of worldviews, generations and eras,” Olga Sutulova comments on the relationship between Arkhipova and Prokopenko. different teams – quite difficult, by the way.

“Thunder and van der Holt are as inseparable as yin and yang”

Technocrat Dutch van der Holt performed by Matvey Lykov turned out to be intriguing and elegant. In the visual appearance, there is an elusive resemblance to Batman: it seems that another second, and he will soar in the air. Stylistic parallels are supported not only by a stylish dark gray raincoat, but also by the exoskeleton that is hidden under it. The image of the Dutchman turned out to be one of the most laborious: the exoskeleton was designed for about two months, and in order to fix the metal vertebrae on the artist’s body, it takes at least an hour. Psychologically, van der Holt is the embodiment of the Machiavellian mind with its blatant disregard for morality and diabolical, Mephistophelian cunning.

“My character has his own ideas about life, about the world, about what this world needs. The search for the hero was very thorough, I read Bubble comics, and it was very interesting for me to get to know the hero, – says Matvey Lykov. – Holt is a foreigner, a Dutchman with Japanese roots, he speaks Russian with an accent, and his mentality is different. Nothing personal, just business – that’s his logic. Holt is necessary for Thunder, they are one, like yin and yang: the essence of good is felt in full only in contrast with evil, and these two poles can flow one into the other at any moment.

August van der Holt arrived in the universe of Igor Grom from the Red Fury comic book, accompanied by bodyguard Otto Schreiber (Andrey Trushin). Both in appearance and in the plasticity of a stately Viking, nobility and restraint shine through. “In the Red Fury, my hero is called a stupid barbarian, and I wanted to get away from this: we will have a more intelligent and cheerful character. Conceptually, the guard resembles Aquaman in some way, only he, of course, will not be armed with a trident, ”Andrey Trushin comments on the image of his hero.

Themselves with mustaches: matured Dima Dubin and matured Thunder

Igor Grom and his young partner Dima Dubin (Alexander Seteykin) will have to mature in The Game. Among the visual symbols of this process are Dubin’s mustache, around which a whole story unfolded. The actor patiently grew the mustache prescribed according to the script for almost two months, but in the end the vegetation had to be shaved off and replaced with an artificial one, since the scenes in the film were shot out of chronology. Grom’s partner undertook to grow a mustache in order to look more respectable in the eyes of his colleagues.

The Thunder himself in the new film will have to pass the test of popularity. After the arrest of the Plague Doctor, his fame has spread so far that its rays threaten to blind the major. “My character will have to prove his maturity,” says the lead actor Tikhon Zhiznevsky. “In the first film, Igor Grom’s character traits were only indicated, the image was rather schematic, and now it’s time to make it more voluminous, multifaceted, alive.”

Shooting in style The Hatters

The building of the plant in Sestroretsk was converted into a training ground, where the police quickly shoot targets from various weapons. “This scene is being edited in a very unusual, interesting, rock and roll way,” says stunt coordinator Maxim Yakovlev. – In terms of rhythm and character, for example, the compositions of The Hatters would be suitable here.

The authors of the tricks will show the viewer at least three cultures of combat, from Asian martial arts with references to kung fu and ninja duels to Russian hand-to-hand fighting and professional secret service technicians in the style of films about Bourne.

In the new film, the directors promise “more spectacular and spectacular graphics, as well as bold stunts”, and performed exclusively live. “We do not use digital understudies in the film, despite the fact that among the tricks there are very dangerous ones, which, I am sure, in the West, would be shown using graphics,” Maxim adds. “In The Game, I have complete freedom of action, here experiments are encouraged and welcomed, and this is a rare case.”

Mind games: adaptation with surprises

In the original comic book based on which the movie is based, part of the action of “The Game” takes place in Venice. It is there that Igor Grom will have to play a fatal game of chess with the “Plague Doctor” who escaped from prison – the very “game” for which the beloved major, Yulia Pchelkina, will pay with her life. Mikhail Kitaev, producer and director of Plus Studio, declined to assess how much the storyline of the film would differ from the original, promising that the adaptation would surprise both fans who are thoroughly familiar with the original and those who have never picked up comics. The Game also introduces a new evil genius, a character called Ghost.

“We immediately understood that we were not going to make a frame-by-frame comic in any case,” Roman Kotkov, editor-in-chief of the Bubble publishing house, warms up the intrigue. “Anything can happen in the MCU of Thunder. I’m sure you certainly don’t expect what’s in the picture.”

“As in the case of The Plague Doctor, we are free to approach the issue of adaptation: we need a field in order to surprise the viewer,” adds Mikhail Kitaev. “For the comic book itself, The Game is a culminating story that we were inspired by. At the same time, for the MCU, this is just part of the story, and not the highest point, so there is no question of any ending. I promise that it will be spectacular, spectacular and bright. Whether we succeeded or not, the premiere will show.”

Galina Stolyarova, especially for

Photo: Ksenia Ugolnikova / courtesy of Kinopoisk

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