The Texan auteur is famous for his meticulously staged and choreographed films, with its idiosyncratic rhythms, its symmetrical aesthetics, and teeming casts of interesting actors.
So when the director of the likes of The Royal Tenenbaums, Grand Budapest Hotel and Rushmore releases the trailer for his new film, it’s a very special moment indeed. You could even call it a highly anticipated moment.
The French Dispatch, due for release later this year in Australia, has just dropped its first trailer, and it’s everything you could’ve hoped for. It’s so full of that Anderson obsession with details, you’ll need to watch it several times to pick up even half of what’s going on – like the fact there’s a town called Ennui-sur-Blase. So droll.
The film stars frequent or previous Anderson collaborators including Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Adrien Brody, Frances McDormand, Jason Schwartzman, Saoirse Ronan, Owen Wilson, Edward Norton, Anjelica Huston, Willem Dafoe and more.
Meanwhile, newcomers to the Anderson company include Timothee Chalamet, Lea Seydoux, Jeffrey Wright, Henry Winkler, Elisabeth Moss, Benicio Del Toro and more.
You can’t assemble a more stacked cast in one movie.
The title refers to the fictional magazine within the film, The French Dispatch, which is modelled on The New Yorker magazine – and some of the characters are based on real-life counterparts.
It seems the film will have a framing device of the workings of the magazine, of which Murray’s character serves as the editor, and then be divided into three stories based on what journalists played by Swinton, McDormand and Wright are writing about, including a narrative about student protesters in Paris in 1968, and a jailhouse artist.
Some of it is shot in black-and-white while the colour images have a vintage wash over it.
Anderson directed the film from a screenplay by him, with story credits going to him, Roman Coppola, Hugo Guinness and Schwartzman. All four have previously worked together on Anderson’s films.
The score is by Alexandre Desplat, who has scored every Anderson movie since The Fantastic Mr Fox.
Anderson’s most recent work was 2018 stop-motion animation Isle of Dogs, which was nominated for two Academy Awards.
The French Dispatch will be released in Australia later this year.
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