What’s old is new again, so are you ready to meet the new Power Rangers?
Ever since publicity for the upcoming “Power Rangers” reboot kicked into high gear, Lionsgate has been releasing fresh details about the much-anticipated movie, including a better look at these soon-to-be-superpowered teens outside of their redesigned suits.
The movie synopsis is as follows:
“Saban’s Power Rangers follows 5 ordinary teens who must become something extraordinary when they learn that their small town of Angel Grove — and the world — is on the verge of being obliterated by an alien threat. Chosen by destiny, our heroes quickly discover they are the only ones who can save the planet. But to do so, they will have to overcome their real-life issues and before it’s too late, band together as the Power Rangers.”
If you watched the newly-released trailer, you’d realise that the teaser doesn’t really focus on the Power Rangers in action, but rather on their character development.
In conjunction with the release of some never-before-seen photos, here are some new character biographies for each Ranger that reveal a little bit of who they are and their personal demons before becoming super-powered heroes.
1. Jason, the Red Ranger (played by Dacre Montgomery)
“Jason was a football legend in his small town of Angel Grove until one fateful mistake. When we first meet Jason, he is in need of redemption and is struggling to find himself. But soon he is given a chance to lead a new team made up of an unlikely group of teenage superheroes and must find it in himself to rise to the challenge.”
Australian actor Dacre Montgomery is a born leader in real life, says director Dean Israelite. So what was the actor’s inspiration in playing the Red Ranger? “Growing up, I was into Power Rangers. I was into Batman. I was into Spider-Man. It was more about this journey into manhood, and looking up to these kinds of characters, like vigilantes who sort of look after people,” Montgomery said.
Jason may be the captain of the football team, and has everything going for him – good looks, girls – but “I think he’s seeking a relationship with people in the other social groups in the school“. Montgomery shared, “That’s very much what I did because I didn’t have a group. I was always looking“.
2. Kimberly, the Pink Ranger (played by Naomi Scott)
“Kimberly used to be Queen Bee of Angel Grove High, but has been cast out of the popular clique and is now struggling to find her identity. She has a new rebel without-a-cause, edgy attitude, but this front is hiding a secret that makes her feel deeply vulnerable.”
Interestingly, Scott first auditioned for Trini aka the Yellow Ranger but was offered the role of the Pink Ranger instead, citing that the casting directors were looking for characteristics as opposed to ethnicity.
“Kimberly, at the beginning of this movie, comes across as the popular girl. However, is that who she is? Not really. You get to see the geeky side of her. She’s sassy, and she’s funny. And all of us are smart in our own ways. That was really important, I think, for each character,” said the actress.
3. Billy, the Blue Ranger (played by RJ Cyler)
“Billy has always been challenged in his abilities to communicate and interact socially. Whip-smart and sweet, he is the most pure-hearted of the group. Billy has never really had any friends, so finding teenagers that he is comfortable with is a big deal, and soon he begins connecting with people in a way he’s never been able to do before.”
Billy the Blue Ranger was a nerdy kid in the TV series, but here, the character seems to suffer deeper social problems in connecting to his appears. Here’s what Cyler had to say about his character:
“Billy is very to himself and he’s quiet and he’s very evasive. He doesn’t like confrontation. But then, under that, he wants to be around other people, but he’s very shy. He has a lot of things that he thinks about, like over-thinks. Billy’s very weird, and I like my weird Billy. Because he relates to everybody, just like every other character in the movie.”
4. Trini, the Yellow Ranger (played by Becky G )
“Trini is mysterious but extremely bright. Her parents constantly move for work, making her the perpetual new girl to any school. A loner who owns it, Trini is self-sufficient and contemplative, but always observant. All she wants is to find her gang of friends, but she’ll never admit it – least of all to herself.”
According to Becky G, her Yellow Ranger (coincidentally, yellow is also Becky’s favourite colour) is basically a “cool badass” but isn’t aware of her potential yet.
“She’d rather be by herself — the lone wolf — than to make friends because she’s constantly traveling. She doesn’t really have her feet planted on the ground because she doesn’t have time to do that. She’s constantly moving around due to her parents always constantly dragging her around because of their jobs,” shared the young pop star.
“She’s an older sibling, constantly being annoyed by whatever comes her way. It’s not her intention; it’s just how it comes off. I think when she meets these other four incredible people, they kind of bring the best out of her, and she eventually finds herself realising things about herself or saying things out loud that she had never even thought of before,” the 19-year-old American beauty added.
5. Zack, the Black Ranger (played by Ludi Lin)
“Zack is filled with bravado and swagger. He is tough and cool on the exterior but has many layers beyond his fearless appearance. Zack advertises everything about himself, except the truth, which makes him feel deeply inferior to all his peers.”
Lin was traveling from Malaysia to Singapore when he got the call to audition for “Power Rangers”. As the only Asian actor in the main cast, the 28-year-old actor was stoked in taking on the role of Zack, the Black Ranger. “I love the diversity because, for me personally, I was born in China. I am Chinese. I speak fluent Mandarin. And I go, ‘Man, it’s about time a Chinese person could step up to a Hollywood screen, and international screen, and help save the world,” said Lin.
To the actor, the colour black resembles “depth and the sensitivity that’s hiding underneath the wildness and adventure on top”. “But he’s not able to let that out because there are so many things that are blocking it right on the surface, so many challenges that he’s facing that he can’t handle alone until he meets the friends that he has some safety (with), a place that he belongs,” he continued.
Given that the “Power Rangers” franchise has a huge and passionate fan base, the filmmakers know that they would need to deliver a movie that would both sit well with longtime fans as well as draw in newcomers. The fact that there is focus on character development, implies that the reboot is certainly taking a step in the right direction.
The “Power Rangers” reboot is expected to hit theatres on 24th March 2017.