Fairies are anything but friendly in Netflix’s upcoming urban high-fantasy, buddy-cop film, Bright. That might have something to do with magic being outlawed in Los Angeles.
In an “alternate present,” Los Angeles is home to humans and otherwise non-existent beings alike. Fire-breathing fairies invade hummingbird feeders and an orc named Jakoby (Joel Edgerton) is the first of his kind to become an officer of the LAPD. Jakoby’s partner is none other than the unwilling Ward (Smith), who starts out just as prejudiced against orcs as the rest of the department.
“I am the first orc, under a diversity program, to be allowed into the police force,” Edgerton said. “I’m under investigation already for an incident that involved an orc who should have been apprehended but managed to escape. The feeling is that I looked after my own kind first and neglected to do my job as a result.”
“There’s a great scene where we’re sitting in the car, and the other police officers are beating up an orc,” Smith said. “My character asks [Edgerton’s] the question, ‘Are you a cop first or an orc first? You need to decide.’ Juxtaposed against the imagery of him watching this orc being beaten by the police, I thought it was really cool.”
Personal prejudices and odd-couple pairings aside, magic is treated in this alternate-L.A. as a deadly, high-tech weapon: It’s very much illegal. In Bright, the plot supposedly arrives when the officers receive a call that leads them to what Smith calls “a discovery of a magical relic, an artifact of the Dark Lord’s war against humanity.”
Bright premieres on Netflix in late 2017.