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Work Begins On Apple's $200M Martin Scorsese Epic 'Killers Of The Flower Moon'

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Work Begins On Apple's $200M Martin Scorsese Epic 'Killers Of The Flower Moon'

Production has begun on Martin Scorsese’s new film, the $200 million epic “Killers of the Flower Moon,” the Oscar-winning director’s first collaboration with the filmmaking division of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL).

The Back Story: The film, according to a report in IndieWire, is an adaptation of David Grann’s 2017 nonfiction book “Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI,” which detailed the investigation into a series of murder among Oklahoma’s Osage Nation after oil was discovered on their tribal land.

Scorsese had initially planned to produce the film for Paramount, a ViacomCBS (NASDAQ: VIAC) subsidiary, but the studio balked when the budget began to expand and leading man Leonardo DiCaprio opted to bypass the starring role of a heroic FBI agent in favor of a smaller and morally ambiguous part.

Paramount will retain distribution rights to the film, which is being financed by Apple.

Related Link: Netflix Pays Reported $450M For 'Knives Out' Sequels

Work In Progress: Filming was supposed to begin on “Killers of the Flower Moon” in March 2020, but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Production officially commenced in Oklahoma on April 19.

DiCaprio will appear as the nephew of a ranger (played by Robert DeNiro) who becomes a suspect in the Osage murders. Jesse Plemons is cast in the lead role of the FBI agent, and Scorsese is populating the ensemble with indigenous actors to play the Osage tribal members, including JaNae Collins, Tantoo Cardinal and Lily Gladstone.

Despite the film taking place in the 1920s, Scorsese defined his work as a Western, telling Premiere magazine, “There are certainly cowboys, but they have cars and also horses.”

Production on “Killers of the Flower Moon” is expected to run through the summer. It's not certain if the film will be ready before the end of the year, which would qualify it for the 2021 film awards.

(Photo by Siebbi / Wikimedia Commons.)

 

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