fxpodcast #358: Rob Legato and The Equalizer 3

We continue our informal series of speaking to other key crew who always work closely with the VFX team. You can also hear our Hijack interview here with DOP Ed Moore. This week we focus on the role of Second Unit Director with Rob Legato.

Rob Legato has been nominated for five Academy Awards and has won three. His first win was for his visual effects work on Titanic, his second was for his work on Hugo, and his third for The Jungle Book. In 1996. He won the BAFTA award for Best Achievement in Special Effects for Apollo 13, for which he also garnered his first Academy Award nomination. He received his fifth Academy Award nomination for Best Visual Effects for The Lion King.

Beyond visual effects, Rob has worked as a second unit director on many films, as he discusses in this week’s episode. Rob is a member of the Directors Guild of America (DGA), The American Society of Cinematographers (ASC), and the Visual Effects Society (VES). Rob discusses his role as second unit director on The Equalizer 3,  a great new action film directed by Antoine Fuqua. Rob previously worked with Fuqua on Emancipation (2022) – hear our previous coverage of that film here.  Robert Richardson serves as director of photography each these projects.

Antoine to the left and Bob Richardson to Rob Legato’s right on Emancipation.

This new film is a sequel to The Equalizer 2 and the final installment of The Equalizer trilogy, which were all loosely based on the television series of the same name. The film stars Denzel Washington, reprising his role as retired U.S. Marine and DIA officer Robert McCall, with Dakota Fanning, David Denman, Sonia Ammar, and Remo Girone.

Dakota Fanning

In the film, McCall discovers that his new friends in a small town in South Italy are being intimidated by members of the Camorra (Mafia).  McCall sets out to free them and rid the town of their influence,

Discussions for a third Equalizer film began following its second film release on August 2, 2018. The project was officially announced in January 2022. Filming began in October 2022 on the Amalfi Coast in Italy. It continued in the region until November, after which it moved to Naples, before wrapping production by January 2023, in Rome.

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