Universal Pictures has released a new trailer for Sam Mendes’ World War I epic 1917, showing off the work of award-winning cinematographer Roger Deakins. The trailer reveals a battalion of young British soldiers fighting in the muddy trenches of the brutal war. Two soldiers, Schofield (George MacKay) and Blake (Dean-Charles Chapman), are tasked with crossing enemy territory to deliver a message that will save hundreds more soldiers.
The trailer emerges only a few days after Universal released a behind-the-scenes video that revealed how Mendes and Deakins created the film to look like it was filmed in one continuous shot. “What Roger manages to achieve is for that camera to become a third character,” Mendes said during a panel at New York Comic Con. “If you’re looking at this movie and thinking, ‘it’s one shot,’ I think we will have failed. If you don’t care about [the characters], if you don’t go on that journey with them, then what’s the point? We were on the same page about that from the very beginning.”
“It was this really awesome challenge,” Deakins added. “Everything’s got to be in sync,” he said. “When you’re almost to the end of the shot you’re like, ‘I hope I don’t blow this.’ It was a real trip.”
1917, which was co-written by Mendes and Krysty Wilson-Cairns, also stars Mark Strong, Andrew Scott, Richard Madden, Claire Duburcq, Colin Firth and Benedict Cumberbatch. It will have a limited release on December 25th, with the film going wide in theaters on January 10, 2020.