By now curiosity has likely gotten the best of you, and lead you to click play on Netflix’s polarizing new feature, Bright. The film, which stars Will Smith and Joel Edgerton, was directed by Suicide Squad’s David Ayers, who gets another shot at creating a strange, fantastical world without having to worry about preconceived expectations. Here, he builds a potentially expansive universe, one in which magic and magical creatures are real and exist normally amongst humans.
Set in an alternate-universe Los Angeles, Bright follows two cops, one human (Smith) and one orc (Edgerton) who encounter a magic wand that’s being sought by those who want to use it for evil. It’s up to Smith’s Daryl Ward to save the universe and discover his own powers, which are apparently quite vast. The rules seem complex and unlike those in other fantasy genre pieces, particularly since not everyone in Bright can wield the magic. We spoke with Ayer about how he and his team imagined and constructed the elements of this world, including the magical languages and the wand itself.