Always make a scene with the first trailer for Babylon, the latest outing from La La Land director Damien Chazelle. Coming courtesy of Paramount Pictures, the first footage from Babylon puts the spotlight on its all-star cast, which will be led by the likes of Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie and Diego Calva, who will take audiences on a journey through the Jazz Age. You can check out the first trailer for Babylon below.
Babylon tells a tale of outsized ambition and outrageous excess as it traces the rise and fall of multiple characters during an era of unbridled decadence and depravity in early Hollywood. Set during the Jazz Age of the 1920s and detailing Hollywood’s transition from silent films to so-called “talkies,” Babylon has amassed a stellar cast that includes the likes of Brad Pitt as Jack Conrad, Margot Robbie as Nellie LaRoy, Diego Calva as Manny Torres, Jovan Adepo as Sidney Palmer, Li Jun Li as Lady Fay Zhu, Jean Smart as Elinor St. John, and Tobey Maguire as James McKay.
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If that were not already enough, Babylon will also feature Samara Weaving, Max Minghella, Katherine Waterston as Ruth Arzner, Red Hot Chili Peppers member Flea, Lukas Haas, Olivia Wilde, Spike Jonze, Eric Roberts, Jeff Garlin, and more.
Babylon Will Blend Real-Life with Fiction
While Babylon will tell a fictional story, the period piece will take inspiration from real-life. Most of the characters who inhabit the tale of Babylon are fictional, but the movie will use Hollywood legends as its foundation, with Brad Pitt’s character Jack Conrad described as an “über-movie star.” Inspired by such Hollywood legends as John Gilbert, Clark Gable, and Douglas Fairbanks, Damien Chazelle describes Jack Conrad as a man “reaching a point in his life in his career where he’s starting to look back and starting to wonder what’s ahead.”
Margot Robbie’s character Nellie LaRoy will be constructed similarly. Described as “a scrappy aspiring actress,” Nellie will bring together elements of early stars Clara Bow, Jeanne Eagels, Joan Crawford, and Alma Rubens. “Margot as a person has this—it’s a very Australian sort of thing—brash, bold, hungry kind of edge to her that she was really able to tap into and do a lot of really fun things with,” Chazelle said of his leading lady.
The filmmaker behind such award-worthy projects as La La Land, Whiplash, and First Man, there is a lot of pressure on Damien Chazelle to deliver with Babylon. A pressure that Chazelle is fully aware of. “It was definitely the hardest thing I’ve done,” he said of bringing the grand scale of Babylon to the silver screen. “Just the logistics of it, the number of characters, the scale of the set pieces, the span of time that the movie charts—it all conspired to make it particularly challenging, but it was a challenge that was pretty exciting to take on.”
Written and directed by Damien Chazelle, and featuring the original music track “Voodoo Mama” from Academy Award-winning composer Justin Hurwitz, Babylon is scheduled for limited theatrical release by Paramount Pictures on December 25, 2022, before receiving a wider release on January 6, 2023.