- Cast: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Eric Roberts, Randy Couture, Steve Austin, David Zayas, Giselle Itié, Terry Crews, Mickey Rourke, Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Danny Trejo, Charisma Carpenter, Gary Daniels, Nick Searcy, Amin Joseph, Senyo Amoaku, Hank Amos, Matt Medrano, Aaron Aguilera, Lauren Jones
- Director: Sylvester Stallone
- Writers: Sylvester Stallone, David Callaham
- Producers: Kevin King, Avi Lerner, Kevin King Templeton, John Thompson
- Co Producer: Robert Earl
- Executive Producers: Guymon Casady, Boaz Davidson, Danny Dimbort, Basil Iwanyk, Trevor Short, Les Weldon
- Castings: Deborah Aquila, Mary Tricia Wood
- Costume Design: Lizz Wolf
- D.O.P.: Jeffrey L. Kimball
- Editors: Ken Blackwell, Paul Harb
- Makeup: Scott H. Eddo
- Music: Brian Tyler
- Production Design: Franco-Giacomo Carbone
- Set Decoration: Robert Gould
"The Expendables" is a hard-hitting action/thriller about a group of mercenaries hired to infiltrate a South American country and overthrow its ruthless dictator. Once the mission begins, the men realize things aren’t quite as they appear, finding themselves caught in a dangerous web of deceit and betrayal. With their mission thwarted and an innocent life in danger, the men struggle with an even tougher challenge – one that threatens to destroy this band of brothers.
Barney Ross (Sylvester Stallone) is a man with nothing to lose. Fearless and void of emotion, he is the leader, the sage and the strategist of this tight-knit band of men who live on the fringe. His only attachment is to his pickup truck, his seaplane and his team of loyal modern-day warriors. His is a true cynic who describes what he does as “removing those hard to get at stains.” The team behind him is made up of Lee Christmas (Jason Statham), former SAS and a savant with anything that has a blade; Yin Yang (Jet Li), a master at close-quarter combat; Hale Caesar (Terry Crews), who has known Barney for ten years and is a long-barrel weapons specialist; Toll Road (Randy Couture), a skilled demolitions expert and considered the intellect of the group; and Gunnar Jensen (Dolph Lundgren), a combat veteran and an expert in precision sniping who struggles with his own demons.
When the mysterious Church offers Barney a job no one else would take, Barney and his team embark on what appears to be a routine mission: overthrow General Gaza (David Zayas), the murderous dictator of the small island country of Vilena and end the years of death and destruction inflicted on its people. On a reconnaissance mission to Vilena, Barney and Christmas meet their contact Sandra (Giselle Itie), a local freedom-fighter with a dark secret. They also come to learn who their true enemy is: rogue ex-CIA operative James Monroe (Eric Roberts) and his henchman Paine (Steve Austin). When things go terribly wrong, Barney and Christmas are forced to leave Sandra behind, essentially giving her a death sentence. Haunted by this failure, Barney convinces the team to return to Vilena to rescue the hostage and finish the job he started. And to perhaps save a soul: his own.
- Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
- Filming Locations: New Orleans, USA; Rio de Janiero, Brazil
- MPAA Warning: Strong action and bloody violence throughout, and for some language
- Production Budget: $80 million
- Production Companies: Millennium Films, Nu Image Films, Road Rebel, Rogue Marble
- Production Schedule: 6 April 2009 - 3 July 2009
2010 Guide Analysis: "Stallone's $80 million tribute to 80's action cinema is a much-anticipated love letter to a time when men were men, computer effects were non-existent, and hard R-rated violence and politically incorrect humour was the norm. The plot is thin but perfunctory in many ways, the draw here is seeing a bunch of actors who made their name in the genre team up for an old-school, balls out blast of a good time.
Along with the five stars mentioned above you've also got Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Steve Austin, Terry Crews, Danny Trejo, and cameos by both Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bruce Willis. The few exceptions are Steven Seagal, Kurt Russell, Jean Claude Van Damme and Wesley Snipes who were all offered roles but turned them down due to various differing circumstances. While some expensive sequences were cut, the stars claim the action here is very much of the shoot, stab and fight variety rather than high-gloss FX-driven set pieces.
The concern will be the violence or potential lack thereof. Producer Avi Lerner will apparently test both a PG-13-rated and an R-rated version of the film to see which one will be officially released. Why they're even bothering with a PG-13 is because of the success of films like "Live Free or Die Hard" and Lerner's belief that 2008's "Rambo" could've made even more money had it not contained such extreme violence and gore. On the other hand there's more than a lion's share of people out there anticipating this who won't bother showing up at the cinema if this is to be watered down to a PG-13."