‘The Personal History of David Copperfield’ Trailer Is an Upbeat, Kooky Dickensian Affair

     October 2, 2019


Lionsgate has released the first trailer for The Personal History of David Copperfield starring Dev Patel and directed by Armando Iannucci. The movie is adapted from Charles Dickens‘ story of the same name and co-written by Iannucci and screenwriter Simon Blackwell. With Patel as the titular Mr. Copperfield, the supporting cast includes Peter CapaldiHugh LaurieTilda SwintonBenedict Wong, and Ben Whishaw.


Image via Lionsgate

This first trailer for David Copperfield hints at a bit of a tonal departure for Iannucci. The man behind The Thick of It and Veep seems to be offering up a Dickens adaptation that infuses his own brand of wry, slightly absurdist humor while also preserving the 19th-century author’s sensibilities. It’s a great meeting of the minds and with the level of cast assembled to tell the story of the rise and fall of David Copperfield’s fortunes and the colorful characters he meets throughout his life.

Patel is giving it his earnest all in the trailer but it feels like the unusual coterie of characters he’s surrounded by regularly threatens to steal the spotlight. Laurie’s Mr. Dick is a kite-flying, wispy-haired gent; Swinton’s Betsey Trotwood feeds David a bottle of salad dressing in a hurry, thinking it’s medicine; Wong’s Mr. Wickfield demands sherry in the morning; Whishaw’s Uriah Heep is sporting a helluva bowl cut and making some pretty bad jokes. What’s not to love?

The Personal History of David Copperfield arrives in the UK on January 10, 2020. A U.S. release date has yet to be confirmed. Check out the trailer and glorious poster below:


Image via Lionsgate

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