Who did they get this time? That’s the principal source of interest in “The Expendables 3,” as it is for each new installment of the Sylvester Stallone-anchored all-star shoot-'em-up franchise uniting action heroes past and present.
The new “Expendables 3" trailer, which you can watch above, seems to acknowledge this, functioning as little more than a roll call with explosions mixed in, set to a stomping classic-rock soundtrack. To answer the question: They got Harrison Ford, Antonio Banderas, Wesley Snipes, Kelsey Grammer and Mel Gibson.
While Grammer is best known for his comedic work on TV, the other four are all former leading men of 1980s and early ‘90s action movies now looking for a bit of career rejuvenation. Snipes, for example, is returning to the big screen for the first time since he served the bulk of a three-year prison sentence for tax evasion, and Banderas and Gibson haven’t had a mainstream hit in some years (with the arguable exception of Banderas’ animated movie “Puss in Boots”).
Given the relatively low stakes of the “Expendables” franchise, which no one seems to take too seriously but has also grossed $580 million in combined global box office with its first two films, it seems like as good a place to start as any.
Snipes and company will join returning cast members Stallone (who also co-wrote the script), Jason Statham, Terry Crews, Dolph Lundgren, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jet Li and Randy Couture.
Adding some new blood to the franchise are Kellan Lutz (the “Twilight” films), Glen Powell (“The Dark Knight Rises”), boxer Victor Ortiz and MMA fighter Ronda Rousey.
The story, to the extent that it matters, finds the eponymous mercenary team going up against bad guy Conrad Stonebanks (Gibson), who years ago co-founded the Expendables with Barney Ross (Stallone) but subsequently became a ruthless arms dealer whom Ross had to put down. Unfortunately, his death didn’t take.
“The Expendables” is scheduled for release Aug. 15.