In our own conversation, Renner repeatedly noted that the transition from Hawkeye (filmed in New York and Atlanta) to The Mayor of Kingstown (filmed in Toronto and Kingston, Ontario) was grueling, and that he might not I would have taken on this burden if I had not been able to bring my 8-year-old daughter Ava to these places. (Renner shares custody of Ava with his ex-wife, model and actress Sonny Pacheco, with whom he has exchanged some controversial legal documents over the years.)
In 2017, Renner starred in the thriller River of the Winds in the modern Western style. The film was written and directed by Sheridan, an actor-turned-screenwriter (Sicario, Hell or High Water), and during its production he and Renner had shared feelings. When Paramount hired Sheridan to create more content for the studio’s streaming service, he got Renner to star in The Mayor of Kingstown. (Sheridan co-created this show with one of his co-stars, Hugh Dillon.)
“At the end of the day, I shoot action films with a lot of falutin,” Sheridan said. “I am doing House by the Road with a message. I need someone who has physical strength and energy, but also vulnerability. “
Sheridan added, “My characters start to break down and then heal, and there is an innate sadness he can give them.”
In The Mayor of Kingstown, Renner’s character McLuskey works with his brother Mitch (Kyle Chandler) as an intermediary between prison workers, inmates and their families, giving him unique insight into the city’s interconnected systems of government. “To truly protect them, you have to have relationships with the people who control them,” Sheridan explained. “You must have a relationship with the mafiosi, with the judges, with the police.”
Renner said he was attracted to the show because of his comments on the American penitentiary system and the commercial prison industry. He said he also appreciates the opportunity to play a character like McLuskey, who may appear to be in some way in control of Kingstown, but is at the mercy of larger forces than himself.