Ridley Scott and historical epics are in many ways synonymous (see: 1492: Conquest of Paradise, Gladiator, Kingdom of Heaven and Robin Hood), so it’s fitting that he’s at the helm of the next big Biblical adaptation of 2014, Exodus: Gods and Kings. The film – originally known as simply Exodus – also boasts a rather impressive pedigree of acting talent led by Christian Bale playing Moses – as featured in a newly-released image gallery, offering an early look at such actors as Joel Edgerton (The Great Gatsby) as Ramses and Scott’s Alien leading lady Sigourney Weaver as Queen Tuya (a role handled by Irene Martin in Cecil B. DeMille’s famous 1956 Biblical film, The Ten Commandments).
Indeed, that Charlton Heston-starring rendition of the Moses story has and surely will continue to, cast a long shadow over Exodus, though Bale (during an interview with EW) said that “there was lots of room for us to go places that ‘The Ten Commandments’ never dreamed of going.” Likewise, Scott has long insisted that he’s not so much interested in covering “the big stuff that everybody knows” about the Moses story (though he’s also promised that sequences like the Parting of the Red Sea in Exodus will be “f***ing huge”) – having told EW, “What I thought I knew about Moses I didn’t really.”
Here is some more insight from Scott, on that matter:
“Either I wasn’t paying attention in Sunday school or I had forgotten. I was knocked out by who he was and the basics of the story—it has to be one of the greatest adventures and spiritual experiences that could ever have been.”
In addition to Bale, Edgerton, and Weaver, the Exodus cast includes Ben Kingsley (Iron Man 3) as the Hebrew scholar Nun, Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad) as the Hebrew slave Joshua, and John Turturro (Gods Behaving Badly) as the Egyptian Pharaoh Seti I – father to Ramses. The below image gallery offers a sneak peek at certain, but not all, of these players in Scott’s new film.
Per usual, the costumes, scenery, and overall production design by Arthur Max (Scott’s frequent collaborator for nearly twenty years now) for Exodus look as handsome and tangible as that featured in previous historical adventures directed by Scott; then again, few have accused the filmmaker’s polarizing releases in recent years (Prometheus, The Counselor) of being any less visually beautiful than his earlier work.
One of the big wild card factors here is the script, as cooked up by Bill Collage and Adam Cooper (Accepted, Tower Heist); depending on how they’ve re-envisioned the tale of Moses, Scott’s movie could attract more, less, or equal amounts of controversy compared to Darren Aronofsky’s Noah from earlier this year. The writing duo have already been entrusted to work on a number of other big projects in development, so hopefully that’s a sign that we can expect good things from their work on Exodus.
Exodus: Gods and Kings opens in U.S. theaters on December 12th, 2014.