Academy Award winning director Ridley Scott joins forces with the Academy Award winning writers, Matt Damon and Ben Affleck in The Last Duel. Scott’s directorial debut was the 1977 historical drama titled The Duellists, coming full circle he now directs 2021’s The Last Duel.
Over the last 40 years Scott directed some of the most iconic and successful movies in box office history; Aliens, Blade Runner, Gladiator, Black Hawk Down and Kingdom of Heaven to name a few. Damon and Affleck won best original screenplay for their movie Good Will Hunting. Damon and Affleck will also star in the movie along side Adam Driver (Star Wars) and Jodie Comer (The White Princess)
“I love working with Matt, so it was an added bonus to be able to work with him and Ben as both actors and as screenwriters, along with Nicole Holofcener, and I knew it would be a great result. I had admired the show Killing Eve and had been looking for the opportunity to present Jodie Comer with a challenging role. Her performance as Marguerite will make her one of the great actresses of her generation.” ~Ridley Scott
The Last Duel is based on a true story and is an adaptation of the book The Last Duel: A True Story of Crime, Scandal, and Trial by Combat in Medieval France by Eric Jager. Joining Damon and Affleck in adapting the story to the big screen is Nicole Holofcener.
Here is the synopsis of the book:
In the midst of the devastating Hundred Years’ War between France and England, Jean de Carrouges, a Norman knight fresh from combat in Scotland, returns home to yet another deadly threat. His wife, Marguerite, has accused squire Jacques Le Gris of rape. A deadlocked court decrees a “trial by combat” between the two men that also leaves Marguerite’s fate in the balance. For if her husband loses the duel, she will be put to death as a false accuser.
While enemy troops pillage the land, and rebellion and plague threaten the lives of all, Carrouges and Le Gris meet in full armor on a walled field in Paris. What follows is a fierce duel, the final one sanctioned by governing powers, before a massive crowd that includes the teenage King Charles VI, during which both combatants are wounded—but only one fatally.
Based on extensive research in Normandy and Paris, The Last Duel brings to life a colorful, turbulent age and three unforgettable characters caught in a fatal triangle of crime, scandal, and revenge. The Last Duel is at once a moving human drama, a captivating true crime story, and an engrossing work of historical intrigue with themes that echo powerfully centuries later.
The Last Duel hits theaters on 15 October 2021. No word on if it will be available to stream.
In a joint statement, screenwriters Nicole Holofcener, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon said:
“This film is an effort to retell the story of a heroic woman from history whom most people haven’t heard of. We admired her bravery and resolute determination and felt this was both a story that needed to be told and one whose drama would captivate audiences the way it moved us as writers. As we further explored the story, we found so many aspects of the formal, codified patriarchy of 14th century Western Europe to still be present in vestigial ways (and in some cases almost unchanged) in today’s society. We chose to use the device of telling the story from several character’s perspectives in order to examine the immutable fact that although often multiple people who experience the same event come away with differing accounts, there can only be one truth.”