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Samaritan Villain Pilou Asbæk Reveals The 'Boxing Attitude' Everyone Had Making The Film

When "Samaritan" stars Javon "Wanna" Walton and Pilou Asbæk showed up on the set of the gritty new superhero drama "Samaritan," they did so with their dukes up. Of course, part of the reason was that they were working with legendary "Rocky" star Sylvester Stallone. Equally as important, though, was that the actors' roles required a rough-and-tumble demeanor since the film is set in an unforgiving, crime-laden environment.

New on Prime Video on Friday, August 26, "Samaritan" stars Stallone as Joe Smith, a garbage man completely content with his existence as a loner in Granite City, a metropolis overrun by crime and gang activity. Taking a fascination in Smith is Sam (Walton), a 13-year-old boy who lives with his single mother, Tiffany (Dascha Polanco). Sam has long held the belief that Smith is hiding in plain sight as the former superhero, Samaritan, as acts of vigilantism appear to happen nearby or right in front of him. Smith balks at the idea, though, because 25 years earlier, Samaritan and his brother-turned-superhero-partner-turned-bad guy, Nemesis, both perished in a fiery explosion.

But when an accident reveals to Sam that Smith does indeed have superhero powers, it attracts the attention of local gang leader Cyrus (Asbæk), who is determined to assume the identity of Nemesis and rid the world of Samaritan once and for all. Complicating the situation is that Sam has fallen under the influence of Cyrus, which throws the young teen into the center of the battle.

Naturally, the action in "Samaritan" required a great deal of physicality, including lots of rough scenes for Walton, who was 13 at the time of filming. However, Asbæk noted that everybody was up to the task of taking their lumps for their movie to be effective.

Asbæk says the cast handled themselves like fighters on the 'Samaritan' set

In a press conference with the cast of "Samaritan" attended by Looper, Pilou Asbæk — whose impressive list of credits includes "Game of Thrones," "Overlord," and "Uncharted" — said he was impressed with his young co-star's professionalism and willingness to mix things up for the sake of making the film feel authentic. After all, Javon "Wanna" Walton, who is now 16, brought with him to "Samaritan" his experience as a boxer, since he has amassed 80 bouts to date.

"What I admire about what Wanna did in this film is [that it's] a film we did three years ago, [and he was a] young kid," Asbæk recalled. "Now, I'm sitting with a young man, and it's incredible and mind-blowing, and I f*****g love it. But the thing is that the discipline and the brutality we went through, Wanna didn't complain. No one complained once ... If you got hit for real, you got up. You did it again."

Further reflecting on the experience, Asbæk said that he and his castmates "brought in this boxing attitude to this film, also because it's Sly, with 'Rocky' and everything."

"I loved it because [Wanna was only 13], but no one treated [him] as a 13-year-old," Asbæk added. "Everyone treated [him] as a colleague."

Adapted from Mythos Comics' graphic novels of the same name and directed by Julius Avery ("Overlord"), "Samaritan" premieres on Prime Video Friday, August 26.