Martin Scorsese may look to co-direct his next film, The Wager

Martin Scorsese
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Martin Scorsese is keenly aware of both his age… and the challenges posed by his next production, which looks like being The Wager.

With Killers Of The Flower Moon's long road to fruition all but complete, director Martin Scorsese has some promotional duties to wrap up before he takes a rest and looks ahead to the next project. The filmmaker has openly spoken of late about his age, ending a career and coming to terms with the fact that his body of work will soon be complete, whether he likes it or not.

Following a rest, the 81-year old has already confirmed that his next film will be The Wager, ‘a part courtroom drama and part seafaring tale that follows the 1741 mutiny after the shipwreck of the HMS Wager.’ It’s based on David Grann’s non-fiction book – Grann also being the author of the book on which Killers Of The Flower Moon was based.

Given the notorious difficulties that can accompany a water-based production (just look at the behind-the-scenes stories behind Jaws, Cutthroat Island, and too many sea-based movies to list) Scorsese has been pondering whether he should do something we haven’t seen him try before: work with a co-director.

Speaking with IndieWire, Scorsese said that, “we’ll get working with writers and see if we get it on the page. And maybe it’s something I could co-direct, so to speak. It’ll be difficult [to shoot a movie out on the water.] But there are ways now, with certain technical things we could do, to make it bearable. Depending on how we get the script together.”

When you think of the term ‘co-director’, parity springs to mind (as we often see with animation productions), but it’s also possible Scorsese might be referencing the practice in some film industries around the world where a film can have both a main director and a co-director. This is more common in some film industries such as Brazil, with 2002’s Oscar-winning City Of God being a notable example.

At this point, Scorsese still seems to be figuring it out in his own mind, and it’s quite possible that after a good rest he’ll decide to make The Wager by himself. The film itself is set off the coast of Brazil and will be financed by Apple again. Leonardo DiCaprio will once again be working with Scorsese, although the filmmaker added that he hasn’t decided which role the actor will yet take.

We’ll bring you more on this one as we hear it. In the meantime, here’s a synopsis for The Wager:

‘The story begins when a patched-together boat with thirty emaciated men landed on the coast of Brazil. The men claim to be the survivors of a British ship that crashed onto an island in South America’s Patagonia region. Their tales of surviving the seas and elements make them heroes.

Six months later, another and even more dilapidated vessel is found off the coast of Chile. This ship, carrying three survivors, claims the other men were actually mutineers. As accusations fly, the British Admiralty set a special trial to uncover the truth of what exactly happened on the island.’

More as we hear it.

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