Movies & TV / Columns

Alexander Nevsky On His Starring Role In Gunfight at Rio Bravo, Working With Joe Cornet

February 13, 2023 | Posted by Bryan Kristopowitz
Gunfight At Rio Bravo Image Credit: Shout! Factory

The 411 Interview: Alexander Nevsky

Image Credit: Alexander Nevsky

Alexander Nevsky is an international action superstar from Russia who has been in the movie business since the year 2000. A former professional bodybuilder, multi-time Mr. Universe winner, and current member of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, Nevsky has starred in movies like Showdown in Manila, Maximum Impact, and directed and starred in Black Rose. Nevsky’s latest effort is the western action flick Gunfight at Rio Bravo, directed by Joe Cornet and featuring fellow action stars Olivier Gruner and Mathias Hues and is available via DVD, Digital, and Video On Demand starting January 17th, 2023. In this interview, Nevsky talks with this writer about starring in his first western, working with director Joe Cornet, riding horses, and more.


Image Credit: Shout! Factory

Bryan Kristopowitz: Why did you want Gunfight at Rio Bravo to be your next movie? Have you always wanted to make a western?

Alexander Nevsky: I’ve always liked westerns, but I never thought about making one. Everything changed in 2020, after the lockdown was over and I got introduced to the great director Joe Cornet. He was finishing his western film, titled Promise, co-starring Academy Award Nominee Don Murray. It was Joe who had proposed the idea of making a western together and I liked it a lot.

BK: How did you approach your character Ivan Turchin? Since Turchin is based on a real person, how much of his real life story did you use for not only your performance but also the movie’s story?
AN: I’ve read a lot about Ivan Turchaninov a.k.a. John Basil Turchin (as he called himself in the US). He was an amazing and fearless guy. He immigrated from the Russian Empire, became a hero of the American Civil War and was promoted to Brigadier General by President Lincoln himself. But after the War he disappeared. In our film we’re telling the story of what might’ve happened to Ivan after that. It was very interesting to play him and portray the heroic man, haunted by his past.

BK: Where was Gunfight at Rio Bravo filmed?
AN: We shot it in Benson, Arizona, really close to legendary Tombstone.

Image Credit: Alexander Nevsky

BK: What was it like working with director Joe Cornet?
AN: Joe is very talented! He’s also supportive, prepared, always positive and very well organized. To be honest with you, he’s the best director I’ve ever worked with and I think he just made my best movie to date!

BK: What was it like working with your fellow action stars Olivier Gruner and Mathias Hues?
AN: It’s my second film together with Olivier and fifth film with Matthias. They’re both great action stars and it’s a joy to be on set with them. Olivier had a chance to show his amazing kick-boxing skills in Gunfight at Rio Bravo and Matthias did a fantastic job as a main villain. Both of these guys are very good actors and they’re still in great shape!

Image Credit: Alexander Nevsky

BK: What was the hardest part of making Gunfight at Rio Bravo for you, as an actor? What was the easiest?
AN: Hardest part was preparation. I’ve never tried horseback riding and I’ve never dealt with classic western guns like Winchester or Colt. So I trained for almost 5 months before we started shooting and I should thank Joe Cornet, once again, for all the support (he even allowed me to train with his own horse, The Lady). The easiest part was the actual filming process: I felt happy like a kid. It was so much joy, except having to do it all, while wearing my thick leather jacket during the super hot weather, but that’s another story…

BK: How difficult was it to ride the horse?
AN: I’m a bodybuilder and I know importance of reps very well. It doesn’t matter what you do or how difficult it is, just show up and do your reps. As I said, I’ve never tried horseback riding before, but I was ready to train hard. It paid off. I also had a very good trainer, Shawn Nash, who is a professional rider and stuntman.

Image Credit: Alexander Nevsky

BK: How is making a western like Gunfight at Rio Bravo similar to making an action movie like Maximum Impact or Showdown in Manila? How is it different?
AN: Our western is an action film as well, so it wasn’t too hard for me to adapt. Joe and the legendary fight choreographer, Art Camacho, made sure that Gunfight at Rio Bravo had all the right elements of the classic spaghetti western and real 80s action. I was doing stunts and a lot of shooting, and I was working with my fellow action stars (like in Showdown in Manila), but at the same time we had all of these amazing western locations, horses, hats etc.

BK: Any upcoming projects you can tell us about?
AN: I’ve produced a new Horror film Night of the Caregiver which should be out later this year. It was also directed by Joe Cornet. By the way, Joe and I are about to start our new project The Kaleidoscope in April, it will be a noir thriller.

BK: What do you hope audiences get out of Gunfight at Rio Bravo?
AN: I hope people will enjoy it. Western genre fans will love a real homage to the classic Sergio Leone films and hard core action fans will be entertained by scenes of fighting and shooting. Gunfight at Rio Bravo was released by Shout! Factory and is available on all the Digital platforms, DVD and On-Demand.

BK: What can we expect to see in the sequel Taken from Rio Bravo?
AN: The film is in post-production right now. It has great story, a lot of action, many stars and super team behind it: director Joe Cornet, fight choreographer Art Camacho, executive producer Douglas “Fini” Finical and writer Craig Hamann. The first teaser trailer will be presented very soon!

BK: What’s your favorite western?
AN: I really like all three Eastwood / Leone collaborations. But my favorite? Gunfight at Rio Bravo!

Image Credit: Shout! Factory


A very special thanks to Alexander Nevsky for agreeing to participate in this interview and to david j. moore for setting it up.

Gunfight at Rio Bravo is available on DVD, Digital, and Video On Demand starting January 17th, 2023. Buy the DVD here!

Check out my review of Gunfight at Rio Bravo here!

Check out the official Shout! Factory website for the movie here!

Check out Alexander Nevsky on Twitter here and on Instagram here.

Gunfight at Rio Bravo DVD cover image and final image courtesy of Shout! Factory. All other images courtesy of Alexander Nevsky.