Focus Features has released the first trailer for The Northman, the new Viking-era revenge movie from Robert Eggers, the director of The Witch and The Lighthouse. The epic film, written by Eggers and Icelandic novelist/poet Sjón, cast Alexander Skarsgård as Viking prince Amleth who, as a boy, watched his father (Ethan Hawke) betrayed and killed by his uncle Fjölnir (Claes Bang). Fjölnir takes Amleth's mother (Nicole Kidman) captive, leading to Amleth taking on the mantra "I will avenge you, Father. I will save you, Mother. I will kill you, Fjölnir." The film's cast also includes Anya Taylor-Joy, Björk, and Willem Dafoe. You can watch the trailer below.
Set for release in April, The Northman suffered a minor two-week delay. Focus Features officially describes The Northman as "an action-filled epic that follows a young Viking prince on his quest to avenge his father's murder."
Eggers previously explained how The Northman differs from his previous movies. "The scale is so huge and there are so many more locations and things that I couldn't do everything or know every prop myself," Eggers told Collider in 2020. "That's been a challenge with the new movie...There's many locations in the film, so we were constantly going on scouts to find places or reassess places that we have found and we're building sets there. We're designing all these worlds, building these villages, we're making thousands of costumes and props, training the horses the things they'll need to do, designing the shots of the films."
"There's a lot more storyboarding," he continued. "Generally I only storyboard the scenes that have visual effects or animals and stunts, things where all the departments need to be on the same page for it to work out. But this movie there is rarely a scene that isn't on a boat or doesn't have a lot of extras. We're storyboarding most of the film, which is taking a lot of time."
Taylor-Joy, who starred in The Witch, echoed Eggers' comments about The Northman's ambitious scale in a separate interview. "[We] have now been friends longer than we have been co-workers," Taylor-Joy told Collider. "Getting the opportunity to create art together again is amazing. We have both grown so much apart and now we get to grow back together. I am so proud to be a part of this project … I think we will be presenting to the world something it genuinely hasn't seen before. I just feel so humbled I get to be a part of it."
What do you think? Let us know in the comments. The Northman opens in theaters on April 22nd.