Bill Murray Headlines Wes Anderson’s All-Star Cast

Searchlight Pictures has released the first trailer for The French Dispatch. This is the latest from Wes Anderson (The Royal Tenenbaums, Moonrise Kingdom) and marks his first live-action feature in nearly six years. This time around, the filmmaker is taking a look at old-school magazine journalism in what looks to be, in every single way, an extremely Wes Anderson movie with a truly stacked A-list cast leading the way.

Few directors can put together an ensemble like Wes Anderson, and he may well have outdone himself here. The cast includes Benicio Del Toro, Frances McDormand, Jeffrey Wright, Adrien Brody, Tilda Swinton, Timothee Chalamet, Lea Seydoux, Owen Wilson, Mathieu Amalric, Lyna Khoudri, Stephen Park and Bill Murray. That’s just who is being billed as the core cast. Liev Schreiber, Elisabeth Moss, Edward Norton, Willem Dafoe, Lois Smith, Saoirse Ronan, Christoph Waltz, Cecile De France, Guillaume Gallienne, Jason Schwartzman, Tony Revolori, Rupert Friend, Henry Winkler, Bob Balaban, Hippolyte Girardot and Anjelica Huston all star as well.

As for the trailer, it is set in a quaint little French town and centers on a group of people who run a local magazine. It seems that this is essentially going to turn into an anthology movie, with various stories from the magazine being brought to life in stylish form. Given that each of these stories is quite different, we’re seeing a lot of different types of imagery. War. Love. Art. Timothee Chalamet naked in a bathtub. There’s even a large jailbreak. It’s a lot to process. But it unquestionably is brimming with Wes Anderson’s highly distinctive style, that much is certain.

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The French Dispatch (subtitled of the Liberty, Kansas Evening Sun) doesn’t have much in the way of a synopsis or plot description, with the brief logline simply stating the movie “brings to life a collection of stories from the final issue of an American magazine published in a fictional 20th-century French city.” That checks out based on what we’re seeing in the trailer. Up until this point, the movie remained somewhat elusive, as we were only recently given a look at the poster and some images. Thanks to the trailer, we finally have a relatively firm grasp on what to expect.

Wes Anderson most recently directed the animated Isle of Dogs, which hit theaters in 2018 and was something of a commercial disappointment, grossing just $64 million. Though, like the majority of the director’s work, it was generally heralded by critics. Anderson’s last live-action effort was 2014’s The Grand Budapest Hotel, which was a very different story. It was a major critical and commercial success, earning $172 million at the box office on its way to a Best Picture nomination at the Academy Awards, in addition to winning four Oscars. The French Dispatch is set to hit theaters on July 24 from Searchlight Pictures. Be sure to check out the new trailer for yourself.

Ryan Scott at Movieweb

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