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Cate Blanchett Plays a Renegade Nun in the Trailer for Warwick Thornton's 'The New Boy'

The latest film from the 'Samson & Delilah' and 'Sweet Country' filmmaker premiered at Cannes, opens this year's Sydney Film Festival, then hits cinemas nationwide.
By Sarah Ward
June 07, 2023
By Sarah Ward
June 07, 2023

Since Samson & Delilah arrived in 2009, earned the Cannes Film Festival's prestigious Caméra d'Or for Best First Feature and proved an instant great of Australian cinema, every project from filmmaker Warwick Thornton has been a must-see. He got spooky with ghost-story anthology The Darkside, pondered the nation's relationship with the Southern Cross in documentary We Don't Need a Map and explored the country's race relations in blistering historical drama Sweet Country. Then, he co-directed the second season of the Mystery Road TV series, turned the camera on himself in meditative small-screen doco The Beach and was also behind vampires-in-the-outback show Firebite.

Thornton is an Aussie icon. With his latest project, he has also joined forces with a fellow Aussie icon: Cate Blanchett. The Oscar-winning actor is following up her award-nominated role in Tár earlier in 2023 with Thornton's new film The New Boy — and playing a renegade nun in 1940s Australia, no less.

As the just-dropped trailer shows, The New Boy heads to a remote monastery with a mission for Indigenous children, where Sister Eileen (Blanchett) is in charge. In a sneak peek filled with golden hues and bubbling with a thoughtful mood, her faith is tested when the titular child (newcomer Aswan Reid), a nine-year-old orphan, arrives and has his own experience with religion, which clashes with the mission's take on Christianity.

Thornton writes and directs The New Boy, as he did with with Samson and Delilah and We Don't Need a Map. He also does triple duty as his own cinematographer, as he also has with the bulk of his filmography. And, on-screen, Deborah Mailman (Total Control) and Wayne Blair (Seriously Red) feature alongside Blanchett and Reid.

Unsurprisingly given its helmer, star and the former's Cannes history, The New Boy premiered at the prestigious French film festival in May, and enjoys its first Aussie screening as the opening-night film at the Sydney Film Festival.

After that, audiences Australia-wide will be able to check out the dream pairing of Thornton and Blanchett — and the movie debut of Reid — when The New Boy hits cinemas in general release on Thursday, July 6.

Check out the trailer for The New Boy below:

The New Boy opens in Australian cinemas on July 6.

Published on June 07, 2023 by Sarah Ward
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