Cary Fukunaga has finished writing the Napoleon series, a project started by Stanley Kubrick

At this time, many recognize the name of Cary Fukunaga thanks to his work in No Time to Die – 83%, the latest James Bond installment with Daniel Craig at the helm. The film has divided critics and fans, but has generally been said to be a pretty fitting and respectable farewell for the character and the actor. Of course, this director has been working in Hollywood for a while. The project that truly launched him to fame was the first season of True Detective – 85%, series written by Nic Pizzolatto, and starring Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson.

Keep reading: James Bond was a rapist in his early films, says Cary Fukunaga, director of No Time to Die

With No Name – 89%, Jane Eyre – 84% and Beasts of No Nation – 92%, the director demonstrated his versatility to tell stories of all kinds, adaptations or originals. However, as a writer he has faced more obstacles. For example, originally the remake of It – 85% would be in charge, but apparently he took too many creative liberties and added many scenes of sex and violence that did not convince the executives. Eventually he dropped the adaptation and very little of his original writing ended up in the final cut. Similarly, he has spent years trying to build a project that originally belonged to Stanley Kubrick, and the challenge has not been easy.

Stanley kubrick he was one of those directors who took his time to make every movie. Although this helped to achieve his vision, it also meant that his processes were very slow. That is why when he died it did not surprise anyone that many ideas had remained in the pipeline. The director of The Shining – 92% and 2001: Space Odyssey – 96% were really ambitious and had a lot of scripts and synopses that they didn’t have time to complete and that other creators are interested in doing. Out of respect for the figure of Kubrick, not everyone dares to resume their work, but Fukunaga was not only willing, but dedicated himself for years to reviving what is perhaps the most ambitious project that the director left behind.

For a couple of years it was confirmed that Fukunaga was writing and developing a television series about Napoleon that would follow Kubrick’s concept. Originally, the director hoped that his script would become the most important epic film up to that point, and he spent years reading and studying the figure of Bonaparte, further deciding that Jack Nicholson would be its protagonist. Unfortunately, the project was so expensive, and Kubrick was so adamant in his need to be realistic at all costs, that a budget could not be agreed and the film was never shot.

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But the world is different now and Hollywood is willing to invest in big and ambitious productions. Although not much has been said about this project, in an interview with Collider, Cary fukunaga ensures that it is still standing:

I’ve been working on that, I mean, four or five years, maybe longer. So yes, I am involved in that. We already have all the scripts for the episodes and we are preparing to see what stage is next. So yes it will happen.

The director not only took up Kubrick’s idea, but was able to access his original notes:

I’ve spent a lot of time in the library [de Kubrick] and at the house in St. Albans with Christiane, his wife, and his brother-in-law. It’s amazing to be in the presence of the Kubrick library.

Although the director feels very confident about the project, many things can happen before production formally begins, so we will still have to wait a while to learn more about it.

What is known so far is that to respect the detailed script of Stanley kubrick, it was decided that the story would be told as a series. HBO was encouraged to join, as the work will be produced by Steven Spielberg, who directed AI Artificial Intelligence – 73%, another of the great projects that Kubrick failed to make a reality. In 2018, the publisher Taschen he put together a good part of the material and the original script that was had for Napoleon and published it as a book, where it is shown that the film would have been, almost certainly, the most expensive production of that time.

Do not leave without reading: Lunatic at Large, unpublished screenplay by Stanley Kubrick, will be adapted into a film this year

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