Last year, months of speculation were put to rest when Marvel and Netflix cast Jon Bernthal as The Punisher in Season 2 of Daredevil. While production was under way, there were more rumors that the streaming service was considering a Punisher spinoff, which was eventually confirmed back in April. While very little is know about the show thus far, Jon Bernthal recently revealed how excited he is to bring The Punisher's world to life.
This spinoff was set in motion a few years ago, when Marvel reacquired the rights to The Punisher, Ghost Rider and Blade. After Marvel struck its streaming deal with Netflix, many fans believed that Frank Castle would find a home on the streaming service, and ever since he debuted on Season 2 of Daredevil, Jon Bernthal has been winning rave reviews from critics and fans alike. Deadline recently caught up with Jon Bernthal, who revealed that we won't get to meet the real Punisher until this spinoff airs, while adding how excited he is for the new series.
"I think when you're talking about characters like these, the way they fight, what's motivating the fight is very important. Beating someone up to drag them into jail is different than someone who is exercising his rage on people. The Frank Castle you find in this story is not The Punisher. He's reeling from the loss of his family. He's driven by rage and is on a singular mission to find these people who took his family from him, and do it as brutally as possible. I'm tremendously excited about it. I look at it as a real joy and a real responsibility and a real honor to play Frank Castle. I feel like he's in my bones now and he's in my heart. I'm ready to keep going with him. As far as what this show's going to be, and what it's going to be about, and when it's going to shoot, and where it's going to shoot and all that, unfortunately I don't know anything. It's kind of part and parcel with the way that Marvel works. Information is definitely on a need to know basis. I am nervous, and I just want to do this character and this world justice."
Steve Lightfoot (Hannibal) is serving as Executive Producer and Showrunner of The Punisher spinoff, in addition to writing the series' first two episodes. The Punisher marks the sixth series ordered thus far as part of the groundbreaking collaboration between Marvel Television and Netflix including the upcoming Luke Cage, Iron Fist and The Defenders, along with Daredevil and the Peabody Award-winning Jessica Jones. When asked about working under this streaming service's model, here's what the actor had to say.
"It's an absolute joy working for Netflix. I love their model. There's no better system to deliver a story. It lets you be incredibly bold with your storytelling. It lets you take huge risks. It lets you risk alienating your audience and abandoning your audience, and then being courageous enough to know that you're going to win them back four episodes down the line, but you know that they don't have to wait four weeks until they get that episode. I think with a character like Frank Castle, it's really important to go all the way. When he has a moment of brutality, to make it fully brutal, and then try to explain what he did with the regret and the remorse and the shame. Let that seep in a couple episodes down the road. But to try to play the brutality and shame at the same time, I think it's not real. I really love the Netflix model, and I think they're really on to something."
Netflix will debut Luke Cage on September 30, although the streaming service hasn't announced premiere dates for Iron Fist or The Defenders quite yet. It isn't known what other plans Netflix may have beyond The Defenders, but there have been rumors of Ghost Rider, Blade and Moon Knight shows in development. It remains to be seen if The Punisher will also surface in any of these other Netflix shows, along with his own series, so stay tuned.