Crafted by the pens of Greg Rucka and Allison Schroeder, Heart of Stone emerges as a grand action spectacle in the timeless tradition. Gal Gadot leads the charge as Rachel Stone, an undercover operative affiliated with a technologically augmented worldwide peacekeeping entity.
The movie propels Stone into a whirlwind global quest to preserve the planet. In numerous aspects, Heart of Stone embraces the quintessential action essence that has etched itself into the annals of earlier eras of espionage cinema, drawing inspiration from the legacy of James Bond while infusing the genre with a distinctly contemporary outlook.
Stunt Coordinator Jo McLaren enthusiastically expressed the thrill she felt upon her initial encounter with the script. The combination of a dynamic female protagonist, intense action sequences, breathtaking settings, and innovative scenes stirred genuine excitement within the stunt team. Furthermore, the absence of budget limitations underscored the film's commitment to genuine, large-scale cinematic craftsmanship.
Jo McLaren emphasized on the remarkable aspects of the production. Venturing to stunning locations, relying predominantly on practical effects rather than excessive blue screen work, elevated the experience. She remarked that although such positivity can often be attributed to every project, this one stood out significantly. The collective experience, the dynamic action sequences, collaboration with talented individuals, and the ultimate outcome have engendered a strong sense of pride among everyone who contributed to the project.
This is something that puts Heart of Stone in line with films like Captain America: Winter Soldier, which relied on the realistic approach rather than having CGI for almost all the scenes. Captain America: Winter Soldier was probably the last film from the MCU that took this approach to reduce costs.
Reflecting on Gal Gadot's involvement, Jo McLaren acknowledged her exceptional performance. Despite Gadot's demanding schedule and extensive involvement in numerous scenes, McLaren initially had concerns about the availability of ample rehearsal time. However, upon collaborating with Gadot on set, those concerns dissipated. McLaren highlighted Gadot's swift comprehension and adaptability, underscoring the advantages of collaborating with an action-savvy talent like her.
"Gal was fantastic. Like you said, she's got so much experience. Her time is very precious, obviously — she's so busy, and she was in so many scenes. At first, we didn't know if were we gonna have enough rehearsal time with her. But as soon as I got to know her and work with her on set, she would pick things up so quickly. That was the beauty of working with somebody that has so much action experience like Gal."
According to Jo McLaren, Gal Gadot possesses an extraordinary muscle memory. Demonstrating a skillful ability to grasp instructions swiftly, Gadot's execution of action sequences and her overall performance left a remarkable impression. When it came to wire-work, her extensive experience from projects like the Wonder Woman series translated seamlessly.