EXCLUSIVE: New Republic Pictures has become a co-financier of the Sam Mendes-directed WWI film 1917. The producer-financier, run by CEO Brian Oliver, has been behind such films as the Elton John biopic Rocketman. Oliver’s earlier films at Cross Creek include Hacksaw Ridge and Black Swan.
Oliver, returning from London after the wrap of the film, will serve as a producer alongside Mendes, who directed a script he wrote with Krysty Wilson-Cairns (Penny Dreadful), his Neal Street partner Pippa Harris, Jayne-Ann Tenggren (Spectre) and Callum McDougall (Skyfall). The co-producer is Michael Lerman (Spectre, Skyfall).
At the height of the First World War, two young British soldiers, Schofield (George MacKay) and Blake (Dean-Charles Chapman), are given a seemingly impossible mission: to cross enemy territory and deliver a message that will stop the slaughter of hundreds of soldiers, Blake’s own brother among them. Mark Strong, Andrew Scott, Richard Madden, Daniel Mays, Adrian Scarborough, Jamie Parker, Nabhaan Rizwan, Claire Duburcq also star, with Colin Firth and Benedict Cumberbatch also playing roles.
The film is being produced by Neal Street Productions for DreamWorks Pictures. Universal Pictures will release domestically December 25 and partner with Amblin Partners on the international release with eOne distributing on behalf of Amblin in the UK.
Oliver launched New Republic at Cannes 2017 after exiting Cross Creek. Among its percolating projects are a Todd Field-scripted adaptation of the Boston Teran novel The Creed of Violence, which Field will direct; the Will Packer-produced urban drama Green Rush; a William Monahan-scripted remake of The Wild Geese; the Jennifer Lawrence-attached Zelda; and the Buck Henry black comedy Bathing Suits, which Veep‘s Brad Hall will direct with Leslie Mann, Ed Helms and Will Forte starring.
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