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how the new series wants to stand out from the film with Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie

Donald Glover and Maya Erskine are the heroes of the new Amazon series, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, inspired by the 2005 film starring Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. But this remake focuses less on action and glamour, favoring married life.

They are the new Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, or almost. Nearly 20 years after the release of Mr. & Mrs. Smith in the cinema, a series of the same name arrives on Prime Video, Friday February 2. The team ofAtlanta, Donald Glover and Francesca Sloane, comes together for this remake which aims to be different from the original.

Because at a time of great recycling in Hollywood, the creators of Mr. & Mrs. Smith promise a “very different” tone from the film that launched the “Brangelina” couple.

The casting is already showing more diversity, with Donald Glover reprising the role of Mr. Smith while Mrs. Smith is played by Maya Erskine (seen in the series Pen15). The heroine was originally to be played by Phoebe Waller-Bridge but the latter abandoned the project due to artistic differences.

In addition to the two headliners, several actors well known to fans of the series come to punctuate the story with their cameos, such as Alexander Skarsgard (Succession, True Blood), Michaela Coel (I May Destroy You, Chewing gum), Sarah Paulson (American Horror Story, Ratched) or Sharon Horgan (Bad Sisters).

Two outsiders

New casting therefore, but also new plot. Doug Liman's film featured a couple of hitmen unaware of their respective professions, but finding themselves competing on the same mission. The series takes the opposite view by transforming the main characters into two loners hired by a mysterious agency.

But as part of the mission entrusted to them, the two heroes must slip into the skin and daily life of John and Jane Smith, a seemingly very ordinary married couple.

“What would a series be like, if our heroes were not the two most beautiful people on the planet, but rather two lonely people, two outsiders, wanting more from life than what they currently have? What if our John and Jane could be anyone, could be you and me?” asks Francesca Sloane, the co-creator of the series, in a note of intent.

As charismatic as they are, the characters of Donald Glover and Maya Erskine do not have the same aura of glamor as Brad Pitt and Angeline Jolie in the feature film. The series makes our spies more banal, sometimes mediocre in their work, in a word more human, which makes the identification of viewers easier (if we ignore the dangerous missions based on shootouts and explosions).

A series more “deep” than the film

Because basically, the new version of Mr. & Mrs. Smith is more interested in the emerging relationship between the two heroes than in their mission. It was Donald Glover, also co-creator of the series, who wanted to focus on this aspect.

The artist also known under the pseudonym Childish Gambino recognized with Entertainment Weeklyhaving only seen the film with Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt recently, after one of his producer friends obtained the rights.

“I watched it and honestly I was like, 'I don't understand.' I mean I understand why this movie is iconic because of the people in it – it's just two beautiful people in a given situation. But I didn't understand the story,” the actor tells the American media.

Regretting that the feature film is only an action film without much depth, Donald Glover begins to develop his project, “a series on human relationships, more focused on what a marriage is, trust, work team, solitude”.

“I wanted it to be something that spoke to people today, because in a time of abundance, why do we feel alone? That wasn't the subject of the film,” he says. he at Entertainment Weekly.

Espionage in the background

Each episode of Mr. & Mrs. Smith is dedicated to a particular mission: bugging a couple, bringing a package to a specific location, etc. But a lot of screen time is devoted to Jane and John's budding relationship, discovering each other and problems as mundane as dirty dishes.

As summarized by Mrs. Smith, Maya Erskine, in a promotional clip, “in this series, we do missions together, but we have to take breaks as a married couple. It becomes a real relationship with espionage in the background.”

With its eight episodes, the remake of Mr. & Mrs. Smith puts marriage and everyday life on the map, but don't forget the action scenes.

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