As biopics rage this year with Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer and Sofia Coppola’s Priscilla, auteur Ridley Scott has joined hands with actor Joaquin Phoenix to bring the French emperor to the big screen.
Joaquin Phoenix usually metamorphizes into the characters he’s playing be it his Academy Award-winning performance in 2019’s Joker or now, in the upcoming Napoleon, the actor gets into the skin of his character, and it’s thrilling. Apple has set the premiere date of the action epic for this Thanksgiving. As we near the release date, here’s everything you need to know.
The film has been billed as an “original and personal look at Napoleon,” coming from Scott and Phoenix, the movie examines the origins and swift ascension of Napoleon as the emperor. While it’s easy to just gauge him as a war general, the director presents a layered character study through the lens of his addictive and often volatile relationship with his wife and one true love, Josephine. The audiences can expect to see famous battles from Egypt to Waterloo, as the French emperor is driven by relentless ambition and a strategic mind.
This is going to be a battle this weekend.
— Napoleon (@NapoleonMovie) October 21, 2023
Starring alongside Phoenix is Venessa Kirby as Empress Josephine who will play a very vital role in the movie as we see her influence on Napoleon’s meteoric rise and downfall. Also, in the cast are Tahar Rahim as Paul Barras, Ben Miles as Caulaincourt, Matthew Needham as Lucien Bonaparte, Youssef Kerkour as Marshal Davout, Paul Rhys as Talleyrand, Catherine Walker as Marie-Antoinette, John Hollingworth as Marshal Ney, and many more.
— Napoleon (@NapoleonMovie) October 19, 2023
Apple has unveiled trailers that see Napoleon in various stages of his life, it gives the audiences a peak into the titular character as well as influential people he was surrounded by as the historical events unfold. The two-and-a-half-minute trailer further teases the epic battle sequences and set pieces Scott has in store while also teasing the dynamic between Napoleon and Joséphine.
Interestingly, the streamer will release a four-hour-long director’s cut on Apple TV+, while the theatrical run time for the R-rated feature stands over two hours. Scott revealed in an interview, “What will happen is, we’ll screen [the theatrical cut] first with Sony, and then it has its run, and then the perfect thing is that [the director’s cut] goes to streaming, and we have four hours 10 minutes.” Following in on the trend of a limited theatrical release followed by a streaming debut, to qualify the movie for the award season race, Apple has decided to open Napoleon in theatres on November 22 before the director’s cut hits the streaming platform on a yet-to-be-announced date.