Army of Thieves hits Netflix this weekend, expanding the cinematic universe Zack Snyder seems to be building after launching a whole new world with Army of the Dead earlier this year. This time around, Army of the Dead star Matthias Schweighöfer checks in as director for a prequel to Snyder's efforts on the original zombie thriller. Schweighöfer also stars in the film, uncovering the fun and adventurous life of his safe-cracking wise guy originally known to audiences as Ludwid Deiter. While speaking to ComicBook.com in an exclusive interview, Schweighöfer opened up about what his time being directed by Snyder taught him that he applied to this new Thieves film while Snyder teased a more expansive future for the franchise.
"His creativity and his fantastic eye," Schweighöfer says are among traits of Snyder's that he took with him from Army of the Dead to Army of Thieves. "He has so much, his energy and his visionary ideas. And Zack told me if you want to create things, you really have to create. Take your time. Be there, be focus, be present. And dream big. You're allowed to dream big. You can do everything. It's your space. So yeah, that's what I took. Because I'm a thief, that's what I took from him on the set of Army of Thieves."
Army of Thieves is not Schweighöfer's first time directing, with half-of-a-dozen titles on his resumé already. It provided this almost too good to be true scenario where Snyder's Army of the Dead world could expand with one of its cast members starring in a prequel which they also oversee as director. Snyder has no reason to believe such a thing will happen again in the near future but certainly seems open to the possibility.
"I don't know, I mean, look, Matthias is a kind of unusual case, and it's kind of a perfect storm," Snyder says. "And so, it's a great gift that we got from him. Not only being an amazing actor and having this amazing character, but also that he is a director and understands storytelling and dramatic direction and so he was able to have this ensemble cast and put them all together into a movie. So, thank God we had this happen. So I don't... because I wasn't necessarily like, on the hunt for an actor/director, but it just worked out perfectly."
As noted in ComicBook.com's official review for the film (which awarded it 4.5 out of 5 stars), Army of Thieves has some cuts and references that Army of the Dead fans will analyze and build new theories on. Snyder seems to have some tricks up his sleeve for this world that is growing on Netflix with the anime follow up Army of the Dead: Lost Vegas being the next in line. "Listen, the good news is Shay [Hatten] and I have written everything," Snyder says. "As far as the animated series, Shay and I did the entire thing, because that's another two hours of content basically that you're going to get. Shay wrote the entire script for Army of Thieves. He and I wrote Army of the Dead together. We have a plan for Army Two and beyond. So yeah. So I think that if you care, it's there. How's that? That's our motto."
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Are you excited for Army of Thieves? Share your thoughts in the comment section or send them my way on Instagram! Army of Thieves debuts on Netflix this weekend. Army of the Dead is also available now.