Following on from his impressive ‘one take’ war film 1917, Sam Mendes is gearing up for his next feature film.
Mendes is taking a step back from his more action-heavy films like 1917, Spectre and Skyfall with his upcoming picture, titled Empire of Light. It will be a love story about and around a beautiful old cinema on the South Coast of England in the 1980s.
Empire of Light will mark many firsts for the Academy Award-winning director, including his first time as sole screenwriter and his first time working with Olivia Colman.
After winning her first Oscar for Yorgos Lathimos’ The Favourite, Colman has shown no sign of slowing down with multiple awards nominations for her role in Netflix’s The Crown. Most recently, she has garnered both Golden Globe and Academy Award nominations for her role in The Father alongside Anthony Hopkins. With Colman alone, the cast of Empire of Light makes it a film to already be watching out
Sam Mendes’ new film will also see the return of frequent collaborator and cinematographer, Roger Deakins (yet another person on this film to win an Oscar). While still in early development, it’s clear this film has talent by the bucket load.
Empire of Light is set to be produced by Searchlight Pictures. Mendes has commented: “I have long been an admirer of Searchlight and the dynamic way they have produced and released some of my favourite theatrical releases of recent years.”
He continued: “This project is very close to my heart, and I couldn’t be more delighted that it has found its ideal home”.
With a passionate director who is confident in the studio behind him, a legendary cinematographer, and one of the most talented actors working today, Empire of Light certainly has high expectations but every chance of meeting and surpassing them.
The film is set for an autumn 2022 release.
Words by George Bell
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