The latest “like Hollywood used to make” Netflix original, “Pain Hustlers,” just got a brief announcement teaser.
The 62-second trailer, which you can watch above, is mostly a montage of high-intensity incidents and reactions and offers up Emily Blunt as a pharmaceutical rep allegedly getting into the painkiller game “for the right reasons.” Her boss or co-worker, Chris Evans, has no such qualms of conscience. When asked “Is this even legal?” Evans replies “Like 67 in a 65.”
As the trailer states with onscreen text, the film may cause “increased energy, elevated mood, ecstasy, paranoia, aggression [and] greed.” The picture, opening in theaters on Oct. 20 one week prior to its Oct. 27 Netflix debut, comes courtesy of director David Yates. It’s just the second film he’s directed outside of the Wizarding World of J.K. Rowling since helming the fifth Harry Potter film in 2007.
This film is more of an old-school studio programmer compared to his $180 million “Legend of Tarzan” from summer 2016. This is the sort of film, with movie stars chewing into real-world character roles without spandex or green screen and sans franchise aspirations, which Netflix essentially promised when they started making original films in 2015. Even as far back as 2014, Evans was threatening to retire from acting. The implication was that a non-stop MCU schedule and fewer opportunities for films like “Snowpiercer” made being a full-time actor less appealing.
Penned by Wells Tower, “Pain Hustlers” is adapted from Evan Hughes’s 2018 article published in The New York Times Magazine. “The Pain Hustlers,” published in 2018, eventually became a book “Pain Hustlers: Crime and Punishment at an Opioid Startup.” Netflix picked up global distribution rights at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival.
“Pain Hustlers” also features Andy Garcia, Catherine O’Hara, Jay Duplass, Brian d’Arcy James and Chloe Coleman. To the extent that this film will detail the horrors of the modern American opioid crisis, it’ll join Hulu’s “Dopesick” and Netflix’s recent miniseries “Painkiller.”