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John Boyega exits Netflix movie Rebel Ridge mid-shoot, cites family reasons

Image of John Boyega at a special event.
John Boyega made an abrupt exit from the Netflix movie Rebel Ridge. Pic credit: ImageCollect/Robin Pope/Landmark Media

It was recently announced that the 29-year-old Star Wars actor John Boyega abruptly left the Netflix movie Rebel Ridge, due to family complications. Fans are worried about his mid-shoot exit, as it indicates the seriousness of the situation. Many fans have taken to Twitter to express their concern and well wishes to the actor.

Boyega’s departure was first reported by Deadline as an exclusive. The publication wrote, “The production is currently paused, but we understand Netflix is working hard to find a replacement for the Star Wars actor, and someone is likely to be drafted in in the next few days.”

Deadline also indicated that filming for Rebel Ridge had recently begun, on May 3. The movie kept suffering through delays due to the coronavirus pandemic. It was originally slated to begin filming in April 2020.

What is Rebel Ridge?

Rebel Ridge is an upcoming Netflix thriller from Jeremy Saulnier, the 44-year-old writer-director behind Green Room and Hold the Dark. While details about the movie have been kept under wraps, Variety writes, “this upcoming movie will be a high-velocity thriller that explores systemic American injustices through bone-breaking action sequences, suspense, and dark humor.”

Boyega has been tied to this project for an unusually long amount of time, with news of his casting breaking in November 2019. Other cast members expected to star in Rebel Ridge are Don Johnson (Knives Out), AnnaSophia Robb (The Carrie Diaries), James Cornwell (Star Trek), and Emory Cohen (the OA).

What has Netflix said about John Boyega?

As of the time of writing, Boyega and his production company still hold a solid relationship with Netflix. He is expected to star in another one of their upcoming movies, They Cloned Tyrone, a science-fiction comedy movie that’s currently in post-production.

Sharing some insight into the relationship between Boyega and Netflix, Deadline shared a quote from a Netflix spokesperson. It read, “Rebel Ridge is pausing temporarily as we look to re-cast John Boyega, who needed to leave the project for family reasons. We remain committed to Jeremy Saulnier’s extraordinary film and look forward to resuming production.”

The spokesperson added, “We look forward to continuing our partnership with John Boyega’s UpperRoom Productions, in addition to our upcoming film They Cloned Tyrone, in which he also stars.”

Further details on Boyega’s family situation have not been announced.

Rebel Ridge is expected to premiere on Netflix.