The First Trailer for 'True History of the Kelly Gang' Sets Fire to the Bushranger Tale

The star-studded film features George McKay, Russell Crowe, Essie Davis, Nicholas Hoult and Charlie Hunnam — and will hit Stan in January.
Sarah Ward
Published on November 27, 2019

He was the subject of the world's first narrative feature film, has been played by everyone from Mick Jagger to Heath Ledger and Down Under director Abe Forsythe, and has long been considered Australia's version of Robin Hood. A folk hero to some and a ruthless outlaw to others, Ned Kelly is firmly entrenched in the nation's history. But, while every Australian knows his name and his supposed final words, no one has seen a version of Ned Kelly quite like the one cooked up by director Justin Kurzel, screenwriter Shaun Grant and author Peter Carey in True History of the Kelly Gang.

With the Macbeth filmmaker in the director's chair, and his Snowtown scribe Grant adapting Carey's eponymous Booker Prize-winning novel, True History of the Kelly Gang doesn't just tell the usual bushranger tale. It steps through Kelly's story, naturally, but it also makes plain that it's playing fast and loose with reality — and interrogating the myth that's surrounded the notorious figure since his hanging at Melbourne Gaol in 1880 in the process.

The result is an astonishing Australian film that's set to be one of 2020's finest and, as its just-dropped first trailer shows, an energetic, propulsive and visually stunning movie as well. True History of the Kelly Gang also boasts a killer cast, with rising British star George MacKay (Ophelia, 11.22.63, Captain Fantastic) playing Kelly as an adult, stellar first-timer Orlando Schwerdt exploring his boyhood, The Babadook's Essie Davis stepping into his mother Ellen's shoes and Russell Crowe playing fellow bushranger Harry Power, who initiates the young Kelly into his lawless way of life. Charlie Hunnam and Nicholas Hoult also pop up as cops, Leave No Trace's excellent Thomasin McKenzie features as the fictional love of Kelly's life, and Earl Cave — son of Nick Cave — plays Kelly's brother and accomplice.

Already one of the most anticipated Australian films of recent years, True History of the Kelly Gang proved a hit at this year's Toronto International Film Festival — and, following a trend made popular by Netflix and Amazon of late (see: The Irishman, Marriage Story, Brittany Runs a Marathon and The Report), will hit both cinemas and Aussie streaming platform Stan in January 2020.

Check out the trailer bellow:

True History of the Kelly Gang releases in Australian cinemas on Thursday, January 9, 2020, then drops on Stan on Sunday, January 26.

Published on November 27, 2019 by Sarah Ward
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