First Look at Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Diego Calva & More in Damien Chazelle’s Babylon

We finally have our first look at La La Land director Damien Chazelle’s next project, Babylon, a period epic set in Hollywood during the roaring 1920s. Released courtesy of Vanity Fair, these first-look images offer a glimpse at the characters and the stellar cast who will play them, which includes the likes of Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Diego Calva, Jovan Adepo, Li Jun Li, Jean Smart, and Tobey Maguire.

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Paramount Pictures

Paramount Pictures

Paramount Pictures

Paramount Pictures

Paramount Pictures

Paramount Pictures

Paramount Pictures

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The images tease a lush, grand vision of the Hollywood era, and while plot details remain a mystery at present, director Damien Chazelle has revealed that the story will explore “the multiple levels of transformation, from the city itself to the industry, and the people hoping to make it big.” The filmmaker has teased the ambition of Babylon saying, “It was definitely the hardest thing I’ve done. 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.”

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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.

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. Phew.

While most of the characters in Babylon are fictional, the movie will take inspiration from real-life, with Brad Pitt’s Jack Conrad described as an “über-movie star,” inspired by such Hollywood legends as John Gilbert, Clark Gable, and Douglas Fairbanks. “He’s reaching a point in his life in his career where he’s starting to look back and starting to wonder what’s ahead,” Chazelle revealed.

Babylon is Due for Release in December

Paramount Pictures

Babylon is something that Damien Chazelle, who has impressed with the likes of Whiplash, La La Land, and First Man, has been working on for some time. In his head, at least. “The basic idea was just to do a big, epic, multi-character movie, set in these early days of Los Angeles and Hollywood, when both of these things were coming into what we now think of them as,” the filmmaker revealed about the period piece, which he has been thinking about since moving to Los Angeles around 15 years ago.

Chazelle will use both Whiplash and La La Land as references for his Babylon creation, juxtaposing the glamour of one with the darkness of the other. “It was really a wild West period for these people, this gallery of characters, as they rise and fall, rise, fall, rise again, fall again,” he said. “The thing that they’re building is springing back on them and chewing them up.”

Babylon is scheduled for limited theatrical release by Paramount Pictures on December 25, 2022, before expanding wide on January 6, 2023.