It was only a year ago that The Green Knight was all set to premiere at the SXSW Film Festival. The medieval fantasy film starring Slumdog Millionaire star Dev Patel as the valiant Sir Gawain, one of the lesser-known knights of King Arthur's Round Table, would have then been followed by a theatrical release in May. However, the coronavirus pandemic forced movie theaters to close and film festivals to be canceled, leaving The Green Knight in the wind.
The Green Knight, which was first announced back in 2018, is an updated retelling of Sir Gawain for a whole new generation, and there's a lot to look forward to (it looks a bit like Midsommar meets Game of Thrones). Here’s what we know so far about The Green Knight, from release date news to cast to what we think the plot is all about.
What's the release date for The Green Knight?
The Green Knight was originally set to premiere at South by Southwest on March 16, 2020, followed by a release in theaters on May 29, 2020. But the film festival was canceled, and A24 decided to pull the movie’s release date. After much debate about when and how it should open, The Green Knight was rescheduled for July 30, 2021.
What is the plot of The Green Knight?
The Green Knight will follow the adventures of Sir Gawain, King Arthur’s reckless and chivalrous nephew. To prove that he’s a hero in his own right, he sets off on a quest to find and fight the elusive Green Knight, an enormous green stranger known for testing the worth of men. However, before Sir Gawain can get to the Green Knight, he must battle giants, thieves, and whatever else comes his way on his journey.
The film is based on the 14th-century poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. The poem tells the story of Sir Gawain, who accepts the Green Knight’s challenge to strike him with his axe in place of King Arthur. To prove his worth, Gawain successfully beheads his challenger. Miraculously, however, the Green Knight doesn’t die and promises to return the favor to Gawain in a year’s time. The challenge is meant to test Gawain’s resolve, chivalry, and loyalty.
However, it looks like this bold new adaptation will take things in a somewhat trippier direction. So who knows exactly what to expect.
Who is the director of The Green Knight?
David Lowery is writing and directing the film and is no stranger to the action/adventure and fantasy genre. Lowery began his career making shorts before debuting his first feature with 2013’s Ain’t Them Bodies Saints.
Since then, Lowery has directed various films, including the visually stunning Pete’s Dragon, the Robert Redford drama The Old Man & the Gun, and the fantastical romantic drama Ghost Story. He's also set to direct the live-action adaptation of J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan. While these films are diverse in nature, Lowery is perceptive when exploring themes of humanity, so expect some of that to be included in The Green Knight.
Who's in the cast of The Green Knight?
The film has a pretty impressive cast list. In addition to Dev Patel as Sir Gawain, The Green Knight also stars Joel Edgerton as Lord, Ex Machina's Alicia Vikander as Lady, Ralph Ineson as the Green Knight, Sean Harris as King Arthur, Sarita Choudhury as Sir Gawain’s mother, Barry Keoghan as Scavenger, Erin Kellyman as Winfred, and Katie Dickie as "Queen."
Alicia Vikander is listed only as Lady/Esel and Edgerton as Lord. However, considering that The Green Knight is based on the poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, it’s a safe bet that Vikander and Edgerton’s characters are Lady and Lord Bertilak, respectively. In the poem, they are the lord and lady of the Green Knight’s castle, and Lady Bertilak is involved with testing Sir Gawain’s honor.
Is there a trailer for The Green Knight? What about a poster?
Yes and yes! The trailer is thrilling, packed with adventure, and a great introduction to the Green Knight. Dev Patel's Sir Gawain has his work cut out for him. You can check out the full trailer and poster for the film below!
And here's the official teaser poster.
The Green Knight releases in theaters on June 30, 2021.
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