Hollywood has tried to make an action hero out of Taylor Kitsch ever since he broke through as brooding Dillon Panthers tailback Tim Riggins on Friday Night Lights. But after the meager returns of films like Battleship and John Carter, the hunky star looks to be seeking his niche in projects like True Detective season two and HBO’s Emmy-winning film The Normal Heart. But if studios have given up on Kitsch-as-action-hero, the games world may not have: In the trailer for the forthcoming Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, Kitsch is all big-guns-blazing, jetpack-wearing, wisecrack-spouting tough guy, leading the viewer (represented through a game-like first-person perspective) through the improbable future of sci-fi warfare.
The spot, created in partnership with Activision, agency 72andSunny, and Pony Show Entertainment, was directed by Pony Show’s Peter Berg. Berg, of course, is the guy responsible for making a star out of Kitsch in the first place, as the creator of Friday Night Lights, and he turned to him for lead roles in both Battleship and Lone Survivor. But this time, Kitsch isn’t expected to carry the box office–instead, he’s just carrying the viewer as he mentors us through a running/jumping/gravity-defying charge through an unnamed futuristic city.
Unlike the game itself, which seems to draw heavily on the fact that it has a CG representation of Kevin Spacey in a lead role, the only other star to appear in the new trailer is Emily Ratajkowski , who makes a brief cameo as a hallucination suffered by the viewer. Also unlike the previous trailer, which was gameplay-based, rather than live action, there’s way less shooting people involved–a fair trade off to have a little less creepy, CGI Spacey in our lives.