EXCLUSIVE: Apple Studios has dedicated to finance and produce Kitbag, the Napoleon Bonaparte epic that Ridley Scott will direct, with Oscar-winning Joker star Joaquin Phoenix taking part in the French emperor and army chief. Manufacturing will start in early 2022 within the UK. Scott and Kevin Walsh will produce for Scott Free.
Deadline final October revealed the aspirations of Scott and Phoenix to re-team on this movie, which now has a screenplay by David Scarpa. He wrote the Scott-directed Getty kidnap drama All The Cash within the World. Scott Free’s take care of twentieth Century Studios obliged him to point out it there final fall, nevertheless it grew to become free and clear in the direction of yr finish, and a world rights deal closed inside the previous two weeks at Apple Studios, the place Scott Free has its first look deal for tv tasks.
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“Napoleon is a person I’ve at all times been fascinated by,” Scott instructed Deadline. “He got here out of nowhere to rule all the things — however all of the whereas he was waging a romantic warfare together with his adulterous spouse Josephine. He conquered the world to attempt to win her love, and when he couldn’t, he conquered it to destroy her, and destroyed himself within the course of.”
Whereas Scott has lengthy needed to make a Napoleon movie — and different nice filmmakers just like the late Stanley Kubrick additionally tried however didn’t succeed — key for Scott was having the suitable actor to seize the complexities of a personality who introduced an entire nation to heel and used that energy for his personal conquering ambitions. Scott noticed Phoenix’s skill to do one thing near that when he directed him within the function of Roman chief Commodus within the 2000 Finest Image profitable drama Gladiator.
“No actor might ever embody Napoleon like Joaquin,” Scott stated. “He created one among film historical past’s most complicated Emperors in Gladiator, and we’ll create one other together with his Napoleon. It’s an excellent script written by David Scarpa, and as we speak there’s no higher associate than Apple to convey a narrative like this to a world viewers.”
The movie’s title is derived from the saying “There’s a basic’s employees hidden in each soldier’s kitbag.” The movie is an authentic and private take a look at Napoleon’s origins and his swift, ruthless climb to emperor, considered by way of the prism of his addictive and sometimes risky relationship together with his spouse and one real love, Josephine. The intention of the movie is to seize Napoleon’s well-known battles, relentless ambition and astounding strategic thoughts as a rare army chief and warfare visionary.
It’s one other massive function dedication for Apple, which underneath Apple Worldwide Video heads Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht is starting to point out how their slates will issue within the streaming ecosystem. The emphasis is not going to be on the quantity coming from Netflix or Disney+ however that doesn’t imply Apple gained’t step up for a fog chopping A listing film bundle to decorate its rising tastemaker slates for show on theatrical and Apple TV+.
The Kitbag deal is not less than on the monetary scale of the one Apple Studios made final fall to amass world rights to Emancipation. That movie bundle with Antoine Fuqua directing Will Smith in a Willam N. Collage-scripted motion thriller concerning the harrowing escape of Peter, a runaway slave pressured to outwit cold-blooded hunters and the unforgiving swamps of Louisiana on a tortuous journey North the place he joined the Union Military. Apple additionally stepped up for Greyhound, the WWII drama that Tom Hanks wrote and starred in for director Aaron Schneider, which premiered final July. And Killers of the Flower Moon, the $180 million + adaptation of the David Grann guide that Eric Roth scripted and which has Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio set to star.
Past Greyhound, Apple has a number of films within the awards season hunt now together with the Sofia Coppola-directed On The Rocks with Rashida Jones and Invoice Murray, the docu Boys State, the animated Wolfwalkers, and the upcoming Cherry, a harrowing drama that’s the first movie Joe & Anthony Russo directed after Avengers: Endgame. Tom Holland and Ciara Bravo star.
Regardless of a pandemic that has stunted the progress of many filmmakers, the ever-ambitious Scott has continued to be prolific for the Scott Free banner Walsh runs for him. Scott most not too long ago wrapped The Final Duel, with script by Nicole Holofcener, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, for twentieth Century Studios. Scott re-started manufacturing after the pandemic shutdown and accomplished manufacturing in Eire underneath strict protocols. Damon, Adam Driver, Jodie Comer and Affleck star within the interval drama chronicling one among France’s final legally sanctioned duels, when King Charles VI (Affleck) which declared that Knight Jean de Carrouges (Damon) settle his dispute together with his squire Jacques LeGris (Driver) over a declare of sexual assault by the knight’s spouse (Comer) in 1386.
In March, Scott begins manufacturing in Italy on Gucci, the MGM drama that can star Woman Gaga because the murderess Patrizia Reggiani alongside a killer forged together with Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Adam Driver, Jared Leto and Jeremy Irons. Scott and Giannina Scott are producing. Kitbag will observe.
Scott and Phoenix are repped by WME, Scarpa by Gersh.