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The Equalizer 3 Director Explains How Denzel Washington’s “Final Masterpiece Of Violence” Came About-TGN


  • The Equalizer 3 brings Denzel Washington’s story to a close, promising an action-packed adventure against the Italian mafia.
  • Director Antoine Fuqua reflects on the challenge of developing a new story with emotional stakes for Washington’s character.
  • The reunion of Washington and Fuqua, with their complementary skills and history of collaboration, is a huge benefit for The Equalizer 3.

The Equalizer 3 is set to bring the story of Denzel Washington’s Robert McCall to a close. Trailers promise an action-packed adventure with a protagonist who, despite trying his best to live in retirement, is just as deadly as ever as he faces off against the Italian mafia. The Equalizer 3 was directed by Antoine Fuqua, who also helmed the previous two franchise entries, with 2014’s The Equalizer regarded as one of Fuqua’s best movies.

One of the largest challenges in continuing a franchise like The Equalizer or John Wick is discovering new ways to spin a somewhat similar tale. During an exclusive interview with Screen Rant to celebrate The Equalizer 3‘s release, Fuqua reflected on the journey to develop a story that creates believable emotional stakes for Washington’s action hero as he headed into what is set to be his final outing in the franchise. See what Fuqua shared below:

Richard Wenk wrote a great script. We talked a lot about it in Equalizer 2. During breaks, we discussed these things, and it was really about finding a home for Robert McCall. We tracked his journey, which was finding his purpose, and in the second one, making peace with the past. And then you’re like, “Okay, where does he settle down when he’s finished?” He does his final masterpiece of violence, of helping people, and then he has a home, so that’s how that came about.

Editor’s Note: This piece was written during the 2023 WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes, and the movie covered here would not exist without the labor of the writers and actors in both unions.

Why Antoine Fuqua & Denzel Washington Make Such A Great Team

The Equalizer 3’s cast and story seem tailored to deliver a worthy trilogy-capper, but another huge win for the movie is the reunion of Washington and Fuqua. One reason for this is that both Fuqua and Washington have a wealth of experience in complementary disciplines, with Washington being a top-tier dramatic actor and Fuqua an expert at crafting hard-hitting stories. Fuqua’s history as a music video director proves his instinct for the rhythm of an edit and scene, and his work on movies like What’s My Name: Muhammad Ali suggests a love for real-world fighting that translates to grounded action sequences.

Another huge benefit is that The Equalizer 3 marks the fifth collaboration between Fuqua and Washington. In addition to working on The Equalizer and The Equalizer 2 together, Fuqua and Washington have collaborated on The Magnificent Seven remake and Training Day, the latter of which earned Washington his second Oscar win, but first Best Actor. The level of trust that each man has for the other is sure to show in the upcoming threequel, as if each is able to bring the best out of the other, The Equalizer 3 could be one of the pair’s best efforts yet.

Key Release Dates

  • The Equalizer 3 Temp Poster

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