William Shakespeare‘s Macbeth is getting another adaptation. Just a few years after the last cinematic version of the classic Scottish play, Deadline reports that Joel Coen will direct a new version starring Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand.
It’s unclear whether this is a direct adaptation or a loose one. The central core of the story, revolving around Lord and Lady Macbeth, who plot to murder the Scottish king and take the throne, will remain the same.
One interesting aspect is that Ethan Coen is not on board. Although Joel was the sole director on many of the brothers’ earlier movies, it is generally accepted that in addition to writing their films together, they also direct them together. But Ethan is not on board for this project. So this will be the first feature Joel has directed without his brother.
Justin Kurzel‘s 2015 Macbeth, which starred Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard, was period-appropriate. Would Coen make another one so soon after? Or will this project be adapted to a new setting?
Either way, this is a fascinating project with major names involved. A24 have picked up worldwide distribution rights as well, and their track record is very good. We’ll wait for more news, and see how quickly the film comes together. Washington recently signed on to direct and star in A Journal For Jordan, while McDormand will next be seen in Chloe Zhao‘s Nomadland.