Adam Driver, who is poised for a busy fall thanks to Marriage Story, The Report and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, is in early talks to star opposite Matt Damon in Ridley Scott‘s period drama The Last Duel, Collider has learned.
Ben Affleck is set to co-star alongside Killing Eve sensation Jodie Comer, and yes, this is the movie set in 14th century France in which a knight rapes his friend’s wife while the man is away at war. When no one believes the woman, her husband returns from the battlefield to challenges his former friend to a duel from which only one of them will walk away. At least… that’s how it was described initially.
Today’s Variety announcement sanitizes the original logline, and according to the trade, The Last Duel “is an epic tale of betrayal and justice, told from three distinct points of view: two knights (Damon and Driver) whose bond is tested by treachery and a young woman (Comer) forced to navigate the brutal and oppressive culture of the era in order to survive.
Deadline initially reported that Damon and Affleck would play the two leads, but Variety reports that Affleck was always slated for a supporting role due to his commitment to Adrian Lyne‘s Deep Water. I’m not sure I’m buying that, as Deep Water is slated to start production in November, and The Last Duel won’t start shooting until early 2020, but regardless, it’s a relief to learn that Affleck isn’t playing the rapist, as that’s not what his career needs right now.
Driver is a solid choice for the part despite being quite a bit younger than both Affleck and Damon. The actor has never shied away from risque material, having caught his big break on HBO’s Girls. Interestingly enough, Disney/Fox have apparently yet to formally greenlight The Last Duel, and I can’t imagine Disney would cast Driver in this part if his role in Star Wars was slated to continue beyond The Rise of Skywalker, which brings the Skywalker saga to a close.
Damon and Affleck co-wrote the script with Nicole Holofcener, and the Good Will Hunting duo will also produce alongside Scott and Kevin Walsh. Madison Ainsley will serve as an executive producer, and Drew Vinton will oversee the project on behalf of Damon and Affleck’s company Pearl Street Films.
Driver is poised to receive his second Oscar nomination for Marriage Story, which has received raves on the fall festival circuit. He also stars opposite Marion Cotillard in the musical drama Annette from Holy Motors director Leos Carax. Driver is represented by Gersh, and Variety broke the news of his talks for The Last Duel.
To watch the final trailer for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, click here.