Jodie Comer won the Emmy for Best Actress in a Drama Series this past Sunday. Her star is definitely rising, and so it was a big question of what she would do to build on her success from Killing Eve. Sadly, the answer appears to be joining the awful-sounding The Last Duel.
We first reported on the film back in July when we learned that it would be the long-awaited re-teaming of Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, who would star and also work on the script with Nicole Holofcener (Can You Ever Forgive Me?). Ridley Scott would be in the director’s chair, and with all these big players, it sounds like a really intriguing assembly of talent! What fantastic story brought these people together? Well, here’s the synopsis via Variety:
“The Last Duel” is set in 14th century France and follows a man who goes to war and returns to discover a friend of his has raped his wife (portrayed by Comer). No one will believe the woman, and the soldier appeals to the king of France and says he wants to fight a duel to the death to decide the man’s fate, becoming the last legally sanctioned duel in France.
Affleck and Damon will play the friends turned enemies, and this all just seems like a disaster where a collection of powerful white men have decided that the best story to tell about a woman’s sexual assault is what men will do about it in 14th century France. I want to believe that Holofcener will bring some much-needed nuance to this story, but that’s a heavy burden to put on one writer, especially when her co-writers are A-list movie stars and Oscar winners and the director is a living legend responsible for some of the greatest movies of all time.
As for Comer, I hope this role is worthy of her talent because the wife role usually isn’t. It’s a role that exists solely as a supporting figure with no internal life of her own beyond how her husband’s actions relate to her. Again, I could be wrong, and maybe The Last Duel is going to be a scathing takedown of men who see women as abused property and resort to meet violence with violence. We’ll just have to hold our breath until the film is released in either 2020 or 2021 (production is set to begin early next year).
Comer will next be seen in Killing Eve Season 3 and the Shawn Levy comedy Free Guy opposite Ryan Reynolds.