At this point, Denzel Washington and director Antoine Fuqua have had a strong working relationship for over 20 years. The actor and director first had the chance to collaborate on the Oscar-winning crime thriller Training Day in 2001 and in the 22 years since then they have worked together to make a complete Equalizer trilogy and the 2016 remake The magnificent seven. It’s clear that both men feel part of a productive partnership, and Fuqua recently explained that their conversations about their joint projects don’t stop on the final day of production.
Interviewing the director last month during the virtual press day for The Equalizer 3, I asked about the influence Denzel Washington had on the film in post-production—given the fact that he not only stars, but is also one of the film’s producers. The director told me that Washington doesn’t make a habit of personally attending when any of their projects are being cut together, but they’re hosting a private pre-screening for him so he can share his thoughts. Fuqua said
Denzel Washington is, of course, not just one of the most acclaimed and respected actors of his generation (if not of all time). He is also a seasoned director having made his directorial debut with Antoine Fisher a year after first working with Antoine Fuqua Training Day. He certainly has more thoughts on any of his films outside of his personal input, so it stands to reason that Fuqua would appreciate his input.
Elaborating on how Washington views the films they’ve made together, the director noted that he gets a proper big screen experience, and the screening is followed by a conversation where he offers his opinion. Fuqua explained that this is valuable in part only because the actor comes to the feature with a fresher outlook than his own:
With a cast that also includes Dakota Fanning (special Man on fire collection), David Denman, Eugenio Mastrandrea, Remo Girone, Gaia Scodelaro, Andrea Scarduzio and Andrea Dodero, The Equalizer 3 is now playing in theaters everywhere – with many critics calling it the best of the trilogy.