After spending years and years in development, our very first look at Werner Herzog’s Queen of the Desert is finally here. The film stars Nicole Kidman as Gertrude Bell, the historian, novelist and member of the British secret service who was instrumental to setting the course for the new political order in the Middle East around 1920. James Franco steps in as diplomat Henry Cadogan. After sharing a tragic romantic affair with Cadogan, Bell decides to forget her love live and focus on exploring the region instead.
With the film heading towards a February 6th premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival, the first Queen of the Desert clip has surfaced. It features a conversation between Kidman and Damian Lewis as Charles Doughy-Wylie. It feels a tad melodramatic, but that might just be because the scene is out of context. You can check it out for yourself below along with four new images from the film.
Via iheartdamianlewis (via The Playlist).
Here’s the official synopsis and images from the film via the Berlin International Film Festival website:
The film tells the story of Gertrude Bell (1868-1926) who, as historian, novelist and member of the British secret service, played a decisive role around 1920 in setting the course for the new political order in the Middle East. As an educated young woman, for whom no suitable husband can be found in England, she journeys to Tehran. After a tragic love affair with diplomat and inveterate gambler Henry Cadogan, she decides to give up on her private life and discover the region as an explorer. Before the backdrop of the disintegration of the Ottoman Empire she learns languages, translates literature, meets with Muslim dignitaries in Cairo, Basra and Baghdad and earns their trust through her pluck and respect. Predestined to be a mediator between the Orient and the British Empire, she contributes to defining the new borders in the region after the First World War. And then love enters her life once again.
Werner Herzog uses the vast desert landscapes to depict the architecture of his characters’ souls. A panoramic epic about the woman who has gone down in history as ‘the female Lawrence of Arabia’.