You have to hand it to Ridley Scott. At the age of 83, the director shows little signs of slowing down – if anything, he’s ramping up, continuing to make movies at an astonishing pace, and creating colossal, confounding work at that. After heading to TV for his wild sci-fi show Raised By Wolves, he has two films (theoretically) hitting cinemas before the year is through, scheduled to arrive within weeks of each other. One is House Of Gucci, his crime-thriller about the notorious fashion family, and the other is The Last Duel, his historical drama with a stacked cast and some major talent in the writing department too – and the trailer for the latter has just dropped. Check it out.
This one finds Scott in sword-clashing history mode (something he knows a thing or two about – see Gladiator, or the director’s cut of Kingdom Of Heaven) and boasts an incredible cast: Jodie Comer, Adam Driver (who also stars in Gucci), and Matt Damon are the central players here. Oh, and yes – that is Ben Affleck in there too, looking like a grown-up Joffrey in his role as Count Pierre d’Alençon. Set in 14th Century France, The Last Duel is a historical story that feels depressingly timely – essentially, it hinges on Comer’s Marguerite de Carrouges accusing Driver’s Jacques LeGris of raping her, of which he denies. The fallout results in a trial by combat between LeGris and Marguerite’s husband, the knight Jean de Carrouges (Damon), and each of their lives hangs in the balance – if LeGris wins the fight and kills Jean, Marguerite will be burned at the stake too.
Notably, Damon and Affleck are behind the screenplay here, working alongside Nicole Holofcener to adapt Eric Jager’s book The Last Duel: A True Story Of Trial By Combat In Medieval France.
The Last Duel is being released by Disney under the 20th Century Studios banner (it was in production when the Fox buyout went through), and is expected to arrive in UK and US cinemas from 15 October – swiftly followed by House Of Gucci in November. Ridley season approachin’.