‘1917’ Trailer Unveils a Tense WW1 Epic from Sam Mendes

Universal Pictures

The trailer has arrived for 1917, an upcoming war film from Oscar-winning director Sam Mendes (American Beauty, Road to Perdition, Jarhead, Skyfall).

Set during the height of WWI, the film follows two young British soldiers – played by Captain Fantastic’s George MacKay and Game of Thrones’ Dean-Charles Chapman – who are handed a mission to cross enemy territory and deliver a message that will save 1,600 men. To further the importance of this mission, one of their brothers is among the men in danger of being massacred.

It looks great, no doubt a big factor going to cinematographer extraordinaire Roger Deakins (No Country for Old Men, Blade Runner 2049), reuniting with Mendes after Skyfall. There’s quite the team behind this one, among them Oscar-winning Aussie editor Lee Smith (The Dark Knight, Dunkirk), Oscar-winning production designer Dennis Gassner (Blade Runner 2049), and 14-time Oscar nominated composer Thomas Newman (American Beauty, Finding Nemo). There’s also strong talent in front of the camera. The cast includes Colin Firth, Benedict Cumberbatch, Richard Madden, and Mark Strong.

It’s been a while since we’ve had a real big war film rock cinemas. Remember that period in which films like Saving Private Ryan, Black Hawk Down and We Were Soldiers, among others, were sought after by both studios and audiences? Perhaps this will kick off a new wave.

1917 will open in Australian cinemas on January 9, 2020. In the US, the film will have a limited theatrical run beginning on Christmas before getting a wide release on January 10, 2020.

Official synopsis for 1917:

Sam Mendes, the Oscar®-winning director of Skyfall, Spectre and American Beauty, brings his singular vision to his World War I epic, 1917.


At the height of the First World War, two young British soldiers, Schofield (Captain Fantastic’s George MacKay) and Blake (Game of Thrones’ Dean-Charles Chapman) are given a seemingly impossible mission. In a race against time, they must cross enemy territory and deliver a message that will stop a deadly attack on hundreds of soldiers—Blake’s own brother among them.

1917 is directed by Sam Mendes, who wrote the screenplay with Krysty Wilson-Cairns (Showtime’s Penny Dreadful). The film is produced by Mendes and Pippa Harris (co-executive producer, Revolutionary Road; executive producer, Away We Go) for their Neal Street Productions, Jayne-Ann Tenggren (co-producer, The Rhythm Section; associate producer, Spectre), Callum McDougall (executive producer, Mary Poppins Returns, Skyfall) and Brian Oliver (executive producer, Rocketman; Black Swan).


The film is produced by Neal Street Productions for DreamWorks Pictures in association with New Republic Pictures. Universal Pictures will release the film domestically in limited release on December 25, 2019 and wide on January 10, 2020. Universal and Amblin Partners will distribute the film internationally, with eOne distributing on behalf of Amblin in the U.K.

Universal Pictures
Universal Pictures
Universal Pictures