Hancock is a 2008 American action-comedy film directed by Peter Berg and starring Will Smith, Jason Bateman, and Charlize Theron. It tells the story of a vigilante superhero, John Hancock (Smith) from Los Angeles whose reckless actions routinely cost the city millions of dollars. Eventually one person he saves, Ray Embrey (Bateman), makes it his mission to change Hancock's public image for the better.
The story was originally written by Vincent Ngo in 1996. It languished in development hell for years and had various directors attached, including Tony Scott, Michael Mann, Jonathan Mostow, and Gabriele Muccino before going into production in 2007. Hancock was filmed in Los Angeles with a production budget of $150 million.
In the United States, the film was rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America after changes were made at the organization's request in order to avoid a "restricted" (R) rating, which it had received twice before. The film was presented and widely released on July 2, 2008 in the United States and the United Kingdom by Columbia Pictures. Hancock received mixed reviews from film critics and grossed more than $620 million in theaters worldwide.
John Hancock is a drunkard with superpowers, including superhuman strength, invulnerability, flight at supersonic speeds, regeneration of wounds, and immortality. Although he uses his powers to rescue people and stop criminals, his activities inadvertently cause millions of dollars in property damage due to his constant intoxication and cynical attitude. As a result, he is routinely jeered by the public and is considered a nuisance by the Los Angeles Police Department. Hancock ignores court subpoenas and lawsuits from the city of Los Angeles to address the property damage he has caused.
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