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Joe Wright and Jonathan Teplitzky to portray Churchill

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- Gary Oldman to star in Wright’s Darkest Hour, Brian Cox to take on the role for Teplitzky’s Churchill

Joe Wright and Jonathan Teplitzky to portray Churchill
Directors Joe Wright and Jonathan Teplitzky

BAFTA winner Gary Oldman will star as Winston Churchill in Joe Wright’s biopic Darkest Hour, principal photography for which will commence this autumn in the UK. The cast also includes BAFTA winning veteran John Hurt as Neville Chamberlain, Churchill’s predecessor as British Prime Minister, Lily James (known for Pride and Prejudice and Zombies [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
and Cinderella [+see also:
trailer
making of
film profile
]
) as Churchill’s personal secretary, Ben Mendelsohn (recently seen in Slow West [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: John Maclean
film profile
]
and Una [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
) as King George VI, and BAFTA winner Kristin Scott Thomas as Churchill’s wife, Clementine.

(The article continues below - Commercial information)Cine Iberoamericano Int

The film is a Focus Features (US) and Working Title (UK) production. Based on an original screenplay by Anthony McCarten, winner of the Best Adapted Screenplay BAFTA for Focus Features and Working Title’s The Theory of Everything [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, the film will follow Churchill as he decides between exploring a negotiated peace treaty with Nazi Germany or standing firm to fight for the ideals, liberty and freedom of a nation. As the unstoppable Nazi forces roll across Western Europe and the threat of invasion is imminent, and with an unprepared public, a sceptical King, and his own party plotting against him, Churchill must withstand his darkest hour, rally a nation, and attempt to change the course of world history. 

For BAFTA winner Wright this will be the fourth feature with the Working Title Focus Features combine after Pride & Prejudice [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, Atonement [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
and Anna Karenina [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
. Focus will release the film in the US on November 24, 2017 and Universal Pictures International in other territories with the UK date set for December 29, 2017.

Darkest Hour is the second Churchill film in the works. Jonathan Teplitzky, best known for The Railway Man [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
for which he won the SIGNIS award at San Sebastian in 2013, is currently in post on Churchill. The film charts the crucial 48 hours in Churchill’s life ahead of D Day as he prepares a final attempt to repel Hitler’s advancing army. Brian Cox (recently seen in The Carer [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
) stars as Churchill while Miranda Richardson (last seen in Testament of Youth [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
) plays Clementine, US actor John Slattery General Eisenhower and James Purefoy (recently seen in High-Rise [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
) King George VI.

Author Alex von Tunzelmann, writer of bestseller Indian Summer that has been in development with Working Title since 2009 with Joe Wright originally scheduled to direct, makes her screenwriting debut with Churchill. The film was developed with the assistance of the British Film Institute. Nick Taussig and Paul Van Carter of Salon Pictures (UK) are producing, with Piers Tempest and Jo Bamford’s Tempo Productions (UK), alongside Claudia Bluemhuber of Silver Reel (Switzerland). Embankment Films is handling international sales. Silver Reel financed with Lipsync (UK) and Creative Scotland (UK).

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