After offering an introspective look at a fictional folk singer with Inside Llewyn Davis – arguably the pair’s best effort in some time – Joel and Ethan Coen are bound for the 1950s with Hail, Caesar!, a period piece that mixes elements of comedy and musical drama and sets it against the fabled Golden Age of Hollywood.
Charting the day-to-day life of a studio fixer operating at a time when business was booming in Tinsel Town, the Coen Brothers have assembled an appropriately starry cast for the feature, and today’s first trailer simply pulses with a snappy, crackling energy as it showcases the high-profile production of the title movie within the actual film.
From George Clooney’s Roman general fluffing his lines to the camp story driving the project, there will be ample light-hearted jokes littered throughout, just don’t call Hail, Caesar! a musical comedy.
Here’s what composer Carter Burwell had to share on the film’s tone.
“I wouldn’t actually call it a ‘musical comedy’ — there are movies within the movie, and those movies might have comedic music, but the movie we’re making is actually not comical,” Burwell said earlier this year. “I haven’t written the music yet, but I’m quite certain it’s actually going to be quite the opposite. It’s going to be rather serious, and it’s about faith. It’s not about the music.”
By design, the Coen Brothers’ latest feature will be particularly meta, acting as a commentary of the glittering fame and excess of 1950s Hollywood. The core plotline tying all of this together, though, is the kidnapping of Clooney’s big-name star, leaving Josh Brolin – a studio fixer who caters to the needs of the town’s elite – to scramble across all of Tinsel Town in an effort to find him. The pair will be joined by Channing Tatum, Tilda Swinton, Ralph Fiennes, Jonah Hill, Frances McDormand, Christopher Lambert and Scarlett Johansson.
Joel and Ethan Coen’s Hail, Caesar! has been slated for a release on February 5, 2016. Until then, you can familiarize yourself with the film’s leading cast members via the gallery below.