The First Trailer for Wes Anderson's 'The French Dispatch' Is Here and It's Very Wes Anderson

'The New Yorker'-inspired tale set in a fictional French town stars Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Timothée Chalamet and Saoirse Ronan.
Sarah Ward
Published on February 13, 2020

UPDATE, APRIL 4: Due to concerns around the coronavirus, Disney has announced that The French Dispatch will no longer release on its initially scheduled date of Thursday, August 13, 2020, with the film now hitting cinemas on October 15, 2020.

To find out more about the status of COVID-19 in Australia and how to protect yourself, head to the Australian Government Department of Health's website.

An offbeat storyline. Mesmerisingly symmetrical frames. A cast that includes Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Owen Wilson, Saoirse Ronan, Willem Dafoe, Jason Schwartzman, Edward Norton, Bob Balaban and Anjelica Houston. Yep, it must be a new Wes Anderson film — and, based on its just-dropped first trailer, The French Dispatch looks like Wes Anderson at his most Wes Anderson-esque yet.

The premise: in the fictional French town of Ennui-sur-Blasé sometime in the mid-20th century, Arthur Howitzer Jr. (Murray) has turned a series of travelogue columns into a weekly American magazine. A supplement to the Liberty, Kansas Evening Sun, The French Dispatch resembles The New Yorker, is staffed by top expatriate journalists, and covers life in France, world politics, high and low art, and diverse stories of human interest. As for the film that shares its name, it focuses on three tales printed in the publication's pages.

Cue 'The Concrete Masterpiece', with Benicio del Toro as incarcerated artist Moses Rosenthaler — who paints portraits of his prison guard (Léa Seydoux) and tries to fend off the interests of an art dealer (Adrien Brody). Next comes 'Revisions to a Manifesto', featuring Timothée Chalamet and Lyna Khoudri as student revolutionaries, as well as Frances McDormand as a journalist. And, there's also 'The Private Dining Room of the Police Commissioner', about a big kidnapping, plus a chef (Stephen Park) known for "the mode of cuisine known as police cooking". A framing story also steps inside the inner workings of the magazine itself, and the publication of a special issue, complete with writers played by Swinton, Wilson, Elisabeth Moss, Jeffrey Wright, Fisher Stevens, Griffin Dunne and Wally Wolodarsky.

The cast list isn't done just yet, with Christoph Waltz, Liev Schreiber, Henry Winkler, Rupert Friend, Cecile de France, Matthew Almaric, Lois Smith and The Grand Budapest Hotel's lobby boy Tony Revolori all popping up.

Obviously, as has proven the case in every Anderson film from Bottle Rocket and Rushmore to Isle of Dogs, every frame looks like it belongs on a wall — or in Anderson's own recent museum exhibition.

Check out the trailer for The French Dispatch below:

After being delayed from its original release date of August 13, 2020, The French Dispatch will now open in Australian cinemas on October 15, 2020.

Published on February 13, 2020 by Sarah Ward
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