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How Does The Gentlemen Netflix Series Relate to the Original Movie?

DIRECTOR GUY RITCHIE rose to fame in the late ’90s and early ’00s for making a very specific kind of crime movie: Cockney mob stories full of larger-than-life characters, over-the-top violence, and the frequent flashes of puerile humor. He continued that tradition in 2019’s The Gentlemen, which starred Matthew McConaughey as the head of a marijuana empire under attack. And that story is now being remixed and retold in a Netflix original series.

This is not the first of Ritchie’s films to be given the small-screen spinoff treatment. Following the success of 1998’s Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels, Ritchie co-wrote a TV series entitled Lock, Stock…, which recreated the hapless crook comedy of the original with a brand new cast of characters.

The Gentlemen is similarly rebooted here: while billed as a spinoff, it bears little resemblance to the movie, instead introducing a new leading man in Eddie (Theo James), a high-ranking military officer who returns home to take on the title of Duke following his father’s death.

Once installed in the family seat, Eddie finds himself dealing with a chaotic, drug-addled brother, mounting debts to some very dangerous people, and the discovery that a portion of their estate has been commandeered by a local family for a highly lucrative marijuana-growing business… which might just solve all his problems, or introduce a whole bunch of new ones.

Ritchie told the BBC that he found the central premise in his 2019 movie The Gentlemen “worth exploring” further through the medium of TV, and that he believes this story of gangsters and aristocrats has longevity, should a second season be commissioned.

“You feel that this could run and run,” he said. “The characters take on their own life, all you have to do is establish a character and create their own voice, and then couple that with an actor and we’re off to the races.”

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Philip Ellis is News Editor at Men’s Health, covering fitness, pop culture, sex and relationships, and LGBTQ+ issues. His work has appeared in GQ, Teen Vogue, Man Repeller and MTV, and he is the author of Love & Other Scams.

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