Director of It star Bill Skarsgård’s new action movie says anime was a big influence: "I read a lot of manga"

Boy Kills World
(Image credit: Signature Entertainment)

Bill Skarsgård is switching horror for action in the new film Boy Kills World, and the director says they drew on some intriguing influences. 

Produced by none other than Evil Dead's Sam Raimi, the new film sees Skarsgård play a deaf man named Boy who has been trained to become an elite assassin after his family is murdered. He’s sent out on a mission of revenge, eager to make those who’ve wronged him pay, in a thriller that draws from video games, comics, anime, and action movies. 

"We talked a lot about what we loved," director Moritz Mohr tells Total Film in our new issue out on Thursday March 28, which features The Fall Guy on the cover. "I love old kung-fu movies. I love Asian cinema. I play a lot of video games and I read a lot of manga. Anime is a big influence. But also shitty little Saturday-morning cartoons that I loved growing up. I knew I wanted to make a revenge movie with a deaf protagonist, but that was literally the one constant."

Alongside Skarsgård as the lead, Bob’s Burgers star H. Jon Benjamin stars as his inner voice. They’re joined by Jessica Rothe, Michelle Dockery, Brett Gelman, and Sharlto Copley in the star-studded cast. 

We’ve also got an exclusive look at the new film, which you can see in full below, featuring Skarsgård’s Boy in action. Speaking about casting him, director Mohr adds that he was originally looking for someone younger, before turning his attention to the Pennywise star. "He’s almost two meters tall, and that’s not very boyish," laughs Mohr. "But at the same time, he’s literally perfect for this. He has this childlike innocence. And he can fight."

Boy Kills World

(Image credit: Signature Entertainment/Total Film)

Boy Kills World will be released on April 26, 2024. And you can read more about it and a whole lot else besides in the new issue of Total Film when it hits shelves and digital newsstands on Thursday, March 28.

Check out the covers below:

Total Film's The Fall Guy covers

(Image credit: Universal/Total Film)

Pre-order the issue here to bag your copy, or click here to subscribe to Total Film and never miss another exclusive. You’ll get every issue before it's in stores, and you’ll get subscriber-exclusive covers. 

Total Film subs offer

(Image credit: Total Film)
Fay Watson
Deputy Entertainment Editor

I’m the Deputy Entertainment Editor here at GamesRadar+, covering TV and film for the Total Film and SFX sections online. I previously worked as a Senior Showbiz Reporter and SEO TV reporter at Express Online for three years. I've also written for The Resident magazines and Amateur Photographer, before specializing in entertainment.