Before Timur Bekmambetov went Hollywood with this summer’s Wanted, he helmed two of the biggest Russian blockbusters in that country’s history, Night Watch and Day Watch. Based on a popular novel, the films tell the story of the Others, hidden warriors of light and dark who police each other in the modern world. Shape changers, immortals, vampires and psychics make up Bekmambetov’s cast of characters in two films that are highly stylized and often wildly incoherent (although the American cut of Night Watch actually makes a little more sense than the more sprawling Russian version).
The films were seen as installments in a trilogy, despite the finale of Day Watch seemingly putting a pretty serious cap on the storyline. At the time I heard the rumor that the third film, Dusk Watch, would take place in the United States and be filmed in English, since American audiences never fully took to the Russian language films (even though they have the most inventive subtitles I have ever seen), but a report in Screen Daily, which says that Bekmambetov is finally gearing up to make the movie, seems to shoot that down, calling it “Independence Day in Moscow.”
So what could be next? With the stories of all the characters from the first two films wrapped up (a little too) neatly, will Bekmambetov bring in new Others (perhaps Americans, following the rumors I heard)? Or will he upset the status quo and drag everybody back? Having never read the original novel, I don’t know what other material there is for Bekmambetov to use – but with Wanted coming soon, there will be plenty of opportunities for the geek press to ask him.