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MAX PAYNE

About The Production
Joining Wahlberg in MAX PAYNE are Mila Kunis as Mona Sax, a beautiful Russian mobster and assassin; Olga Kurylenko (who stars in the upcoming James Bond film Quantum of Solace) as Natasha, Mona's thrill-seeking younger sister; Chris "Ludacris” Bridges as Internal Affairs Detective Jim Bravura; and Beau Bridges as Max's mentor, B.B.

MAX PAYNE is directed by John Moore (The Omen, Behind Enemy Lines) from a screenplay by Beau Thorne, a recent graduate of the University of Texas film program.

The film is produced by Julie Yorn (Bride Wars), Scott Faye and John Moore. "This film is not ‘Minimum Payne. And it's not ‘Medium Payne'. It's Max Payne,” sums up director John Moore, of his new motion picture, which Moore envisioned as a neo noir action-thriller that straddles a knife-edge between reality and the unreal. And Moore, a gifted visual stylist, should know. His use of subjective camera in the film – putting us directly in Max's world and in his head, as well as the use of stateof- the-art slow-motion cameras – hurtles audiences, along with Max, on a roller-coaster ride of action, thrills, mystery and startling, supernatural-tinged imagery.

But long before Moore started pushing things to the "max,” the videogame "Max Payne” had its global debut in 2001; a sequel game, "Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne,” followed in 2003. Critics and fans lauded the game's stylish choreography and cinematic nature; the game's dark, edgy scenes and slow-motion gunfights played out like a graphic novel with film noir influences. Few games translate well to the big screen, but from its inception it seemed as though the story of the hard-boiled cop out for revenge was destined to be played out on the big screen.

Says producer Julie Yorn: "The ‘Max Payne' videogame was developed by people who were passionate about film. From the noir-style cinematography to its characters and dialogue, the game had major cinematic influences and the material transcended the typical videogame experience.”

Nevertheless, the filmmakers faced formidable challenges in bringing MAX PAYNE to the big screen. "You think the adaptation process is going to be really straightforward when there's such a clear story and back story in the game,” says Yorn. "But when you get into it you realize that you have to find a way to make the film distinct and different from the game while still respecting its unique style and spirit.”

The filmmakers and studio entertained hundreds of story pitches until first-time screenwriter Beau Thorne came up with a take on the material that resonated with all. "Beau found a way to bring so much texture to the material,” explains Yorn. "He not only captured the emotional plight of the main character, but was also able to create a world of illusions and shadows – a supernatural quality that had never been part of the property.”

The otherwordly elements added by Thorne include a winged demon that threatens Max and dispatches others to an unimaginable fate. Drawn from Norse mythology, the demon Valkyrie -- grinning, lips drawn back over twisted fangs, eyes glowing red – represents a critical clue in Max's pursuit of those who destroyed his family. Throughout the story, the demon – or elements of it – permeates the action: we hear the thunderous pounding of enormous flapping wings and get a tantalizing glimpse of a pair of wings almost lost in the shadows. The winged demon is an iconic image, and the filmmakers created other key visuals tied to the Valkyrie. Graffiti featuring a "V” pierced with a hypodermic can be seen throughout the film, as well as tattooed wings that brand some of the key characters.

Using the game materials – including the cut scenes and the script – as a springboard, Thorne set out to come up with the foundation for the film. "The game is very visually cinematic, but<

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