What’s director Martin Campbell been up to since revitalizing the Bond franchise in 2006’s “Casino Royale.” Well, arguably just never really living up to that promise. Films like “Edge of Darkness” (2010) and “Green Lantern” (2011) floundered, and “The Foreigner (2017) was totally forgotten. Well, the director is still at it with what looks like a no-nonsense assassin thriller about killers who cannot outrun their past sins, “The Protégé.” The movie stars Michael Keaton, Maggie Q, and Samuel L. Jackson, with Robert Patrick in a supporting role.

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“The Protégé” follows Anna (Maggie Q) and Rembrandt (Keaton) — two of the world’s premiere assassins who share a mysterious past from Vietnam. For years, they traversed the globe, competing for high-profile contracts. But when Anna’s mentor Moody (Jackson) is murdered, she and Rembrandt must form an uneasy alliance and return to Vietnam to track down his killer. Here’s the official synopsis:

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Rescued as a child by the legendary assassin Moody (Samuel L. Jackson) and trained in the family business, Anna (Maggie Q) is the world’s most skilled contract killer. But when Moody – the man who was like a father to her and taught her everything she needs to know about trust and survival – is brutally killed, Anna vows revenge. As she becomes entangled with an enigmatic killer (Michael Keaton) whose attraction to her goes way beyond cat and mouse, their confrontation turns deadly, and the loose ends of a life spent killing will weave themselves even tighter.

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Directed by Martin Campbell and written by Richard Wenk, — “The Protégé” is produced by Arthur Sarkissian, Moshe Diamant, Rob Van Norden, Yariv Lerner, and Chris Milburn. “The Protégé” is due in theaters on August 20, 2021; watch the first trailer below.