The upcoming Russo Brothers film, based on Nico Walker’s 2018 novel, follows a young, troubled man from Cleveland, played by Tom Holland, from his onset in the military to a descent into an opioid addiction to mask his PTSD.

The Russo Brothers explained that Cherry is very much a passion project for the duo. Growing up in Ohio, the Russos were greatly affected by the ongoing opioid crisis and wanted to tell a story to help combat the problematic addiction.

The brothers felt a deep connection with the story and Joe Russo dissects what led to the collaboration with Walker, “We’re from Cleveland and Nico’s from Cleveland. Interestingly enough, we know a lot of people that are implied in the book. I think he’s fictionalized names and personalities. But I worked at the same restaurant that Nico worked at, 10 years apart. So he had a very similar upbringing to us. He just had a very different journey than we did.”

The film illustrates the six stages of Cherry’s life as he unfolds from being a student to a lover, soldier, junkie, and lastly, a thief. “The movie’s broken up into six chapters that reflect those different periods, and each one has a different tone. It’s shot with different lenses, different production design. One’s got magical realism. Another chapter is absurdism. Another is horror…There’s a bit of gonzo in it. It’s raw in its tone. He’s a character in existential crisis,” Joe explains.

Cherry marks the Russo Brothers and Tom Holland’s first partnership away from the MCU, allowing them to venture into projects reflective of real-life societal problems through cinematic arts.

Cherry hits theaters on February 26 and will be available globally on Apple TV+ on March 12. Those interested can watch the teaser trailer above.

In other entertainment news, here’s a first look at Zack Snyder’s upcoming Netflix film.

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