The Equalizer 3 is in development at Sony Pictures – and this time, franchise star Denzel Washington will star opposite Dakota Fanning, his co-star from Man of Fire. Beyond the re-teaming of Washington and Fanning (who starred together in Man on Fire in 2004), we don't know much about what director Antoine Fuqua has planned for his third Equalizer film. However, thanks to a new interview, some early story and production details of The Equalizer 3 are now coming to light!
Antoine Fuqua did an interview with /Film recently, and he teased some of the first details of what fans can expect in The Equalizer 3, starting with the fact that the movie will "Hopefully, reveal a little more about Robert. Yeah, I think that's the key, to learn more about Robert McCall."
Fuqua also revealed some early setting and production details, saying, "We're shooting it in Italy, so that'd be fun. We're going to scout now. Sardinia, probably show up somewhere up the Amalfi Coast. Also, trying to find some small villages, seaside villages, things like that, and then we'll be in Sicily and Naples."
Clearly Fuqua and co. are not going over to all those Italian locations to use them as a stand-in for the Boston setting of the previous Equalizer movies. It seems like The Equalizer 3 will be taking things overseas (for at least part of the plot); it also seems like Fuqua is interested in making this third chapter more personal for Denzel Washington's Robert McCall, by examining his mysterious past. It could be a nice change of pace for f, so that this third film doesn't feel so formulaic compared to the other two. On the other hand, McCall is one of the few action heroes left that doesn't have a sensitive backstory – even though we've had clear hints of trauma that still haunts him.
The other big "X Factor" in all this is who Dakota Fanning will play. A lot of movie fans are jumping to the early conclusion that Washington's McCall would be protecting Fanning's character, giving us a fun Man on Fire redo. However, Fanning is much older now (twenty years older when this movie comes out): it may be more fun to see her play someone coming after McCall as an adversary, rather than an ally.
The Equalizer 3 is slated to be released in theaters on September 1, 2023.