The Adventures of Violet Salmon is an American superhero film based on the comic book character Violet Salmon. Produced by Universal Pictures, it is the first film in the planned Jamesburg Cinematic Universe. The film is directed by Kathryn Bigelow with a screenplay by Jane Goldman. It stars Alexandra Daddario in the title role. The film was released internationally on July 8th 2017.
In the wake of her parents' mysterious death, child prodigy and lawyer Violet Salmon (Alexandra Daddario) begins working as an amateur vigilante in her home city of Jamesburg, hunting for the vicious villain known only as The Plague. A chance encounter with the experimental scientist Holly Vincent (Juliana Margulies) leads to a meeting with the Mayor of Jamesburg (Alec Baldwin) and a life changing and potentially dangerous opportunity for Violet to become a full-blown superhero.
While balancing work, social life and her secret life as The Mysterious S, Violet lives up to her name as she obtains fish-like skills and super powers that make her a hero to the citizens of Jamesburg, but when she learns her father's best friend and her adoptive father Clyde Banks (Idris Elba) is The Plague, she withdraws from her role. But after a deep conversation with her best friend and adoptive sister Bonnie (Ashleigh Murray) and her close friend Katie (Rashida Jones), she finally takes it upon herself to defeat him and earn the trust of the city and its people.
As Violet becomes the face of crime-fighting in Jamesburg, she also begins a relationship with Xavier Marks, her boss. The relationship fizzles out when Violet discovers Xavier's scientific interests and his plot to kidnap and experiment on her alter ego.
As the film progresses, Violet continues to establish herself, but confrontations with The Plague continue to fail, until one night where she comes face to face with Clyde at a gala for her firm, she outs him as The Plague and he takes the entire gala hostage, who's attendees include the mayor, wealthy socialite Vivienne Vixen (Nicole Kidman) and the notorious journalist and Violet's second love interest, Winona Hunt (Rachel McAdams). Violet reveals her identity to all at the gala and with the help of Bonnie and Katie, she faces a battle with Clyde, which she ultimately wins. But as Clyde dies, he manages to throw both Vivienne and Winona out of a broken window at the top of the tallest building in Jamesburg. As both women fall, Violet only manages to save Winona. As Vivienne falls she is saved by an unknown assailant and taken into the night. The film ends with Violet and Winona exchanging a passionate kiss as safety is restored to Jamesburg, for now.
In a post-credits scene, the unknown assailant is revealed to be Xavier, posing in his new villainous alter ego, Spek Ulum. He proposes that he and Vivienne, who is angry with Violet for destroying multiple business ventures with her crime-fighting, join forces to destroy Violet once and for all.
Alexandra Daddario as Violet Salmon
An intelligent girl with a passion for marine biology, Violet graduated from Law School at 17 years old. The same year, her parents were brutally murdered by a mysterious villain known as The Plague. Proving herself as a vigilante in her 20s, she becomes a bonafide hero with the help of some important people, she eventually forms The Saviour Squad.
Ashleigh Murray as Bonnie Banks
Bonnie is Violet's best friend and surrogate sister after the death of her parents. She begins working in the law firm as a paralegal after graduating from college. She is based on the character of the same name from the comics, but with slight differences, Bonnie eventually becomes The Mermaid, Violet's sidekick and a member of The Saviour Squad.
Dylan Sprouse as Xavier Marks
Xavier Marks is the son of the late billionaire business owner and lawyer Michael Marks and the newest board member of Marks, Wallace and Associates, Violet's firm. He befriends Violet and they soon enter a romantic relationship, but Violet notices his struggle with his father's death and the scientific experimentations he's carrying out with wild animals, and his longing to kidnap and experiment on her alter ego. He is based on the character of the same name from the comics, but with major differences, such as the omission of Lewsyna Lucas and her business, his proposition to Vivienne and an expansion of his relationship with Violet.
Rachel McAdams as Winona Hunt
A high-profile Jamesburg-based journalist, she shows interest in the identity of The Mysterious S. Violet takes an immediate liking to her when they first meet and Violet contemplates revealing her identity in order to impress her. When Winona's life is in danger towards the end of the film, Violet reveals her identity and saves her. They finally kiss. She is based on the character of the same name from the comics and bares many similarities, Winona eventually becomes a vigilante of her own, known as The Hunter, an ally of The Saviour Squad.
Nicole Kidman as Vivienne Vixen
A wealthy socialite, Vivienne Vixen is Jamesburg's 'it-girl', she invests in businesses and attends parties. She is considered very judgemental and shouldn't be crossed under any circumstances. It is revealed at the end of the film that she is the anonymous donor keeping Xavier's side-interest of scientific modification afloat. In the comics, Vivienne is Violet's aunt who eventually becomes the villainess The Fox. While the characters are different, it is likely that Vivienne will become The Fox in a future film.
Rashida Jones as Katie Mitchell
Katie is also a lawyer, albite a more experienced one, at Violet's firm and Violet's only close work friend. She is one of the first to find out Violet's true identity and they become closer as a result of the secret. Katie also takes in Bonnie when the truth about her father is revealed. She is based on the character of the same name from the comics and bares many similarities, Katie eventually becomes an ally of The Saviour Squad.
Juliana Margulies as Holly Vincent
Holly Vincent is a prolific government scientist, specialising in gene modification and cross-species breeding. When she discovers Violet is the amateur vigilante, she offers her the opportunity to become a full-fledged superhero. It is Holly who reveals Clyde's identity as The Plague. She is based on Hollis Vincent from the comics, but the two characters are virtually identical apart from their genders, Holly eventually becomes Snakewoman, a member of The Saviour Squad.
Idris Elba as Clyde Banks/The Plague
A well-known philanthropist and a physician like Violet's father, whom he was a close friend of. His secret alter-ego is the villianous serial killer The Plague, who's victims include Violet's parents. Despite having an initially good relationship with Violet and his daughter Bonnie, they both disown him and swear revenge when they learn the truth. He is based on the character of the same name in the comics but with one vital difference, in the comics Clyde never becomes a super-villain and his only victims are Red and Maureen Salmon.
Alec Baldwin as Mayor Hawthorn Hawkins
The city's beloved Mayor, he has the interests of all his citizens at heart and sees the positives in transforming Violet into a superhero. As a result of their deal, Hawthorn and Violet often meet and he reveals his past life as The Hawk decades previously. He becomes a mentor of sorts to Violet and eventually returns to his career of crimefighting on a lower scale. He is based on the character of the same name in the comics and bares many similarities, The Hawk becomes a member of The Saviour Squad.
After the release of the film in summer 2017, Universal confirmed 3 more films in the franchise:
- The Adventures of Violet Salmon 2: Rise of The Fox (Summer 2019)
- The Hawk: Origins (Winter 2020)
- The Saviour Squad (Summer 2021)
Universal Pictures also revealed they were in early development talks of spin-off films featuring Violet's parents, as well as a Bonnie Banks solo film. Rumours of a Winona Hunt spin-off entitled "The Hunter" surfaced in late 2017.