The tales of King Arthur and his knights of the Round Table have been told and retold for ages, but now it’s time for one of the lesser-known knights to get his time in the spotlight. A24 has announced the release of the medieval fantasy film The Green Knight starring Slumdog Millionaire's Dev Patel as the valiant Sir Gawain that will remind us of chivalry and loyalty (and horror) all over again.
Sir Gawain has appeared throughout literature for centuries, with references dating back to the 12th century. In English tradition, he’s often the hero of the story and is usually depicted as being one of the greatest knights of the round table, second only, and often equal to, Sir Lancelot.
The Green Knight, which was first announced back in 2018, isn’t the first live-action adaptation of Sir Gawain’s famous literary adventures, either. There were two previous film adaptations, both by writer-director Stephen Weeks. The first was 1973’s Gawain and the Green Knight and the second was 1984’s Sword of the Valiant: The Legend of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight starring Sean Connery.
It's taken a long time, but the story of Sir Gawain will finally get an updated retelling for a whole new generation, and there's a lot to look forward to. With that in mind, here’s what we know so far about The Green Knight, from release date to cast to the brand new trailer from A24.
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 and what has he done before?
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 is 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 Knights? What about a poster?
Yes and yes! The trailer is thrilling, packed with adventure, and a great introduction of 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.
What's the release date for The Green Knight?
The Green Knight is set to hit theaters on May 29, 2020.