Why Equalizer 3’s 20-Year Reunion Is Basically Man On Fire 2 Explained By Director


  • The Equalizer 3 is seen by director Antoine Fuqua as a spiritual sequel to Man on Fire, reuniting Denzel Washington and Dakota Fanning after 20 years.
  • The film allows Washington and Fanning to showcase their chemistry in different roles, creating a unique dynamic between their characters.
  • Unlike Man on Fire, Washington and Fanning’s characters will be working together in The Equalizer 3.

The Equalizer 3 director Antoine Fuqua explains how the movie’s reunion between two stars is basically Man on Fire 2. Releasing in theaters on September 1, the third and final installment in The Equalizer trilogy sees Denzel Washington return as the vigilante Robert McCall to take on the Sicilian mafia. The Equalizer 3 cast also includes Dakota Fanning, who previously starred alongside Washington in the 2004 Tony Scott film, Man on Fire.

In a new interview with ComicBook.com ahead of The Equalizer 3 release date, Fuqua explained how the movie’s 20-year reunion between Washington and Fanning is basically Man on Fire 2. Though they never talked about it explicitly on set, the director says he does view the film as sort of a spiritual sequel to Man on Fire. Read what Fuqua said below:

We never talked about it collectively, but I’ve thought about it that way. You know when Dakota said she was interested I thought, “Ah yeah! This is Man on Fire but years later – and this is what he’s doing.” But I never said that to them because they’re just in the characters [of Equalizer 3] in those moments. But when you see them together, when I saw them on set, I was just smiling.

The Equalizer 3’s Reunion Is Better Than Man On Fire 2

Custom image of Dakota Fanning in The Equalizer 3 and Denzel Washington in Man on Fire.

Man on Fire follows Washington as a former CIA operative-turned-bodyguard, Creasy, who goes on a rampage in Mexico City after Pita (Fanning), the nine-year-old target he was hired to protect, is kidnapped. The film received mixed reviews, and was only a modest box office success, though it did inspire a wave of action-thrillers during the early 2000s and has largely stood the test of time. However, because Creasy dies at the end of Man on Fire, it’s nearly impossible for it to receive a sequel that would bring back both Washington and Fanning’s characters.

Instead, The Equalizer 3 offers Washington and Fanning a chance to share the screen again, but in different roles, which is a much more exciting prospect. Hopefully, the chemistry between the two actors will shine through once again, but through a totally different dynamic. In the threequel, Fanning’s character is a low-level CIA agent named Emma Collins, so instead of Washington’s character protecting Fanning’s as he did in Man on Fire, McCall and Collins will likely be working together in The Equalizer 3.

Source: ComicBook.com

Key Release Date

  • The Equalizer 3 Temp Poster