So much about the Charlie’s Angels reboot (which also happens to be a bit of a sequel) is both baffling and enticing. Admittedly, it is mostly compelling due to its casting choices. Thus far, the film has netted together an eclectic but excellent mix of names, both big and small, to repopulate the eponymous Charlie’s private detective agency for a new set of adventures.
Djimon Hounsou is the latest notable actor to be included in this group. Specifically, he has been cast as yet another Bosley iteration, according to Variety. The two-time Oscar nominee joins Elizabeth Banks (who also serves as the film’s director) and the previously announced Patrick Stewart (as in Professor X and Captain Jean-Luc Picard) in adopting the Bosley name in Charlie’s Angels.
Plot details of the new Charlie’s Angels are few and far between, but what we do know already piques considerable intrigue, since it expands on the series’ mythology greatly. The Charles Townsend Agency has gone global, situating offices and PI teams in various locations around the world. These groups are at the whim of a selection of strange private clients in need of security and intelligence services.
As for the Angels themselves, Kristen Stewart will lead the newly-minted trio, which further comprises Power Rangers‘ Naomi Scott and Midsomer Murders‘ Ella Balinska.
If we’re banking on the maintenance of established character dynamics in this new film, a big question for Charlie’s Angels reboot then becomes: which Bosley will be their Bosley? Things were much more straightforward at the franchise’s inception when there was only one John Bosley – played by David Doyle in the 1976 television series and Bill Murray in the 2000 film reboot – helping out the Angels. He is a buffoonish but warm-hearted sidekick and fatherly or brotherly figure of sorts for the girls. Simple but effective.
Regardless, the first inklings of an extended Bosley clan are eventually demonstrated in Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle, opening up avenues for the inclusion of new versions of the character. In the film, the late Bernie Mac fills the role of John’s adoptive brother Jimmy. Ja’net Dubois’ Momma Bosley is also introduced, and by the time the film ends, she even plans to adopt another kid. This immediate introduction to multiple Bosleys is all too convenient, but this arc could perhaps be salvageable in the reboot.
Seeing as the new Charlie’s Angels doesn’t aim to erase the decades-long legacy that came before it, these details – and the potential they have – must hold some value to Banks’ creative team. And knowing that the film will leave the confines of California and consciously hit the world stage in a grand way frankly makes it easier to accept that a number of Bosleys can exist and be relevant to the Angels’ many ploys.
As it is, the Bosley family feels like a network all on its own after just one shoddily put-together movie. Hence, Banks’ Charlie’s Angels presents the perfect opportunity to iron over the abrupt way in which this notion was introduced to the franchise in the first place.
I love that Hounsou will be a part of that fascinating legacy, if only because he’s so different from Banks and Stewart as actors. Although tending to stick to supporting roles in recent years (including Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy), Hounsou has been in a ton of huge movies and mostly utilizes his imposing nature to get the job done effectively.
Really, the world was always primed to expect great things from an actor who stole the show in a Steven Spielberg film (the historical drama Amistad, to be exact). Since then, the crowning jewels of Hounsou’s career were particularly fostered during the early to mid-2000s. Films such as Gladiator, In America, and Blood Diamond solidified his status as a striking and nuanced actor.
Hounsou doesn’t need very many lines to make his roles powerful and impactful, as evidenced by his turn in Gladiator as the close ally and friend to Russell Crowe’s protagonist. But when actually given meatier material to work with, as is the case when he depicted a fiery anguished artist in In America, Hounsou will fill your heart and break it effortlessly. Both of his Academy Award nominations (among other accolades) are so deserved.
I’ve long championed for Hounsou to star in his own big film, but over the years have settled for watching him in all manner of smaller roles in tentpole projects. Seriously, sitting through Seventh Son was not my idea of fun! Nevertheless, Hounsou is a pleasant surprise when he pops up in projects, silly or otherwise. The fact that he’s putting down more roots in comic book films – most recently in Shazam! and Captain Marvel – is wonderful, too. There’s just no way for audiences to forget just how impressive he is on the big screen because he is everywhere.
Blockbusters aren’t new to Hounsou, but I’ll always celebrate a chance to witness his gravitas (and at times, goofiness) at the movies. Moreover, getting to see him work alongside Banks’ eccentricity and Stewart’s often-underutilized comedic talents is a treat in its own right. Clearly, Charlie’s Angels continues to set off on the right foot.