Universal Pictures have unveiled a first look at Angelina Jolie’s second film as director after In the Land of Blood and Honey, Unbroken. The film tells the true story of Louis Zamperini, an Olympic runner who was taken prisoner by Japanese forces during World War II. This extended look at the film, screened today during the Winter Olympics, offers a better understanding of Zamperini’s inspirational story. So far, it looks like a relatively safe biopic that seems to be aiming at next year’s Oscars. Time will tell if Jolie’s second film proves her worth as a director, after the mediocre reception received by her debut.
Academy Award-winners Joel and Ethan Coen (No Country for Old Men) rewrote the screenplay from earlier drafts by William Nicholson (Les Misérables) and Richard LaGravenese (HBO’s Behind the Candelabra).
Starring Jack O’Connell, Domhnall Gleeson, Finn Wittrock, Alex Russell, Carla Thexton, and Garrett Hedlund.
Official synopsis for Unbroken:
Academy Award® winner Angelina Jolie directs and produces Unbroken, an epic drama that follows the incredible life of Olympian and war hero Louis “Louie” Zamperini (Jack O’Connell) who, along with two other crewmen, survived in a raft for 47 days after a near-fatal plane crash in WWII—only to be caught by the Japanese Navy and sent to a prisoner-of-war camp.
Adapted from Laura Hillenbrand’s (“Seabiscuit: An American Legend”) enormously popular book, Unbroken brings to the big screen Zamperini’s unbelievable and inspiring true story about the resilient power of the human spirit.
Starring alongside O’Connell are Domhnall Gleeson and Finn Wittrock as Phil and Mac—the airmen with whom Zamperini endured perilous weeks adrift in the open Pacific—Garrett Hedlund and John Magaro as fellow POWs who find an unexpected camaraderie during their internment, Alex Russell as Zamperini’s brother, Pete, and in his English-language feature debut, Japanese actor Miyavi as the brutal camp guard known only to the men as “The Bird.”
The film is produced by Jolie, as well as Matthew Baer (City by the Sea), Erwin Stoff (The Day the Earth Stood Still) and Clayton Townsend (This Is 40). Leading the accomplished behind-the-scenes crew is 10-time Oscar®-nominated cinematographer Roger Deakins (Skyfall).
ETA: USA – 25 December, 2014.