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Napoleon Trailer 1.jpg

Je Suis, Napoleon! Watch the 'Napoleon' Trailer Starring Joaquin Phoenix

By Kayleigh Donaldson | Film | July 10, 2023 |

By Kayleigh Donaldson | Film | July 10, 2023 |


Napoleon Trailer 1.jpg

There have been a number of epic films about the life of Napoleon Bonaparte. The legendary 1927 silent film that runs for 330 minutes. The 1970 war drama Waterloo with Rod Steiger. And let’s not forget his cinematic zenith, Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure. Stanley Kubrick spent decades trying to realize his vision of the average-height general to no avail. Now, Ridley Scott is leading the charge, and we have our first trailer for Napoleon.

Napoleon stars Joaquin Phoenix (height: 5 foot 8), reuniting with Scott for the first time since Gladiator, in the title role. Vanessa Kirby plays his wife Josephine, and the cast includes the likes of Tahar Rahim, Ben Miles, and Ian McNeice.

Ridley Scott is an inconsistent director but he’s also remarkably prolific and dedicated to making the kind of grand historical dramas that are increasingly rare in mainstream Hollywood. When he’s on, he’s unbeatable, as the sinfully underrated The Last Duel reminded us all. This material is certainly up his alley, if only for the incredible battle scenes we’ll get, and this trailer promises us a lot of gorgeously shot carnage.

I also heartily respect Phoenix’s refusal to even try a Corsican accent. Nope, this surly horny despot is a Valley boy now, just deal with it. This is definitely a year of range for Phoenix, with Napoleon being the exact opposite of his character in Beau is Afraid.

Apple is footing the bill, which must be a pretty major one given the sheer scale of this project. It’s one of two major historical dramas they have set for a 2023 release, with the other being Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon. It seems likely that Napoleon will get some kind of fall festival rollout, and we know it is receiving a theatrical release, so you won’t have to have an 85” TV to see every bloodstain on the battlefield.

Napoleon will premiere in North American cinemas on November 23rd, followed by a streaming release on Apple TV+ at a later date.