“Megalopolis”, the juggernaut film by Francis Ford Coppola arrives on the Croisette

“Megalopolis”, the juggernaut film by Francis Ford Coppola arrives on the Croisette
“Megalopolis”, the juggernaut film by Francis Ford Coppola arrives on the Croisette

Francis Ford Coppola, two Palmes d’Or under his belt, returns to Cannes with a film with a phraronic budget, Megalopolisworn by Adam Driver and Nathalie Emmanuel.

Crowned with his two Palmes d’Or, Francis Ford Coppola returns to the Croisette with Megalopolisa film with a pharaonic budget presented this Thursday in official selection.

After Secret conversationPalme d’Or in 1974, and Apocalypse NowPalme d’Or in 1979, the 85-year-old director is competing for a third award, with an ambitious and highly anticipated film.

It is a film about “a man who has a vision of the future” and talks about the “conflict” between this vision and the “traditions of the past”, confided Coppola in 2019, at the Lumière Festival where it was distinguished.

“I would say it’s my most ambitious film, even more ambitious than ‘Apocalypse Now’.”

A project in the making for 40 years

This film, set in a city in full decadence, resembling New York, is a real sea serpent, which Francis Ford Coppola has been trying to make for 40 years. The idea for this film germinated in the director’s mind in 1979, and a first version of the script in 1983, as told by M le Mag. There followed 20 years of financial difficulties, then external events like September 11, which postponed the realization of the project, which would not take shape until 2019.

Presented as a 2 hour 18 science fiction film, Megalopolis revolves around the destruction of a megalopolis and its reconstruction which plays out between a visionary architect (Adam Driver) and the corrupt mayor of the city (Giancarlo Esposito, in yet another villainous role).

His first film in 13 years

Highly anticipated by festival-goers and movie buffs, Megalopolis also marks the return to the screens of Coppola, whose last production dates back to 2011. It is Twixta horror film with Val Kilmer and Elle Fanning, with a much more modest budget than Megalopolis.

A pharaonic budget financed by Coppola

Francis Ford Coppola himself financed the 120 million dollar budget of Megalopolis. To do this, he mortgaged the very lucrative vineyards he purchased in the 1970s in the Napa Valley in California.

A crazy casting

For this juggernaut film, Francis Ford Coppola assembled a brilliant cast. Around Adam Driver and Giancarlo Esposito revolves the actress Nathalie Emmanuel, revealed by her role in Game Of Thrones, Shia Labeouf, Aubrey Plaza (The White Lotus), Laurence Fishburne, Dustin Hoffman, Jon Voight and Jason Schwartzman.

Brilliant testament film or sluggish and disproportionate work? The press is making its predictions and has just published testimonies from members of the production describing a chaotic shoot. Megalopolis was filmed in Atlanta, Georgia between November 2022 and April 2023.

Because if Adam Driver assured at the end of 2023 that he “loved filming” with Coppola, others have had more contrasting experiences. The specialized magazine The Hollywood Reporter already echoed this in January 2023, revealing an “exodus” within the team, fueled by resignations and layoffs, and “completely crazy” filming.

Presented in preview at Cannes, the film does not yet have a release date.

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