Release Date: August 6, 2004 (US)
Director: Michael Mann
Writters: Stuart Beattie
Jamie Foxx as: Max Durocher
Co-Stars: Tom Cruise, Jada Pinkett Smith
Runtime: 120 min
Genre: Crime, Thriller
Rated: R for violence and language
Production budget: $65 million (estimated)
Box office: $217.7 million
Links: Imdb – Official Site
Max (Jamie Foxx) is a cab driver who hopes to some day open his own limo company; one night behind the wheel begins promisingly when he picks up Annie (Jada Pinkett Smith), an attorney working with the federal government who is attractive, friendly, and gives him her business card after paying her fare. Max thinks his luck is getting even better when his next fare, Vincent (Tom Cruise), offers him several hundred dollars in cash if he’ll be willing to drop him off, wait, and pick him up at five different spots over the course of the evening. Max agrees, but he soon realizes Vincent isn’t just another guy with errands to run — Vincent is an assassin who has been paid to murder five people who could put the leaders of a powerful drug trafficking ring behind bars in an upcoming trial. As circumstances force Max to do Vincent’s bidding, the cabbie has to find a way to prevent Vincent from killing again and save his own skin, a task that becomes especially crucial when he discovers Annie is one of the names on Vincent’s hit list.
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- Before Michael Mann was hired, Spike Lee, Martin Scorsese, and Steven Spielberg were all offered the chance to direct the movie.
- Adam Sandler was considered for the role of Max, and even met with director Michael Mann before Jamie Foxx was cast.
- Stuart Beattie, the screenwriter, wanted the studio to cast Robert De Niro as Max (once again making him a taxi driver, though the exact opposite of Travis Bickle). However the studio refused, insisting they wanted a younger actor in the role.
- To help Tom Cruise and Jamie Foxx best to capture the spirit of their characters, Michael Mann wrote documents containing the background of Vincent and Max. Cruise said that the document of Vincent had information on how he began to like jazz, for instance.
- The original draft was set in Manhattan, New York. When Michael Mann came on board, he shifted the setting to LA.
- Jamie Foxx actually crashed the cab with Tom Cruise in it during a “side swipe” scene.
- In preparation for his role, Jamie Foxx also trained as a cab driver.
- Jamie Foxx prepared for the car chase sequences by racing old cars in the desert. Michael Mann often joined him.
- There are no opening credits to the film, nor title. The only credits seen are at the end, starting with “Directed by Michael Mann”. The title is at the end.
- The movie takes place 24-25 January 2004.
- The movie grossed $24.7 million its opening weekend, ranking number 1 at the box office.
Collateral is the best kind of genre filmmaking: It plays by the rules, obeys the traditions and is both familiar and fresh at once.
– Washington Post
No crime film in years boasts a cooler vibe than Michael Mann’s dazzling Collateral.
– Rolling Stone
As a result of Mann’s craftsmanship and concern, Collateral crackles with energy and purpose, a propulsive film with character on its mind and confident men and women on both sides of the camera.
– Los Angeles Times
Foxx makes what he does look effortless. He’s the reason to see Collateral, as he walks into the frame and walks off with the picture.
– Philadelphia Inquirer
Most of the time we are with Cruise and Foxx, and their interplay is never less than galvanizing. Foxx manages the difficult feat of ennobling Max without resorting to the usual lumpenprole baloney. We don’t need it spelled out that Max’s saving grace is his innate decency.
– New York Magazine