Steven Spielberg Confirms Series Adaptation Of Stanley Kubrick’s ‘Napoleon’ Script Is Heading Toward Production & Will Be 7 Episodes
Feb 21, 2023
Believe it or not, it’s been nearly 10 full years since it was reported that Steven Spielberg was interested in taking Stanley Kubrick’s unproduced “Napoleon” script and adapting it as a TV series. This has clearly been a passion project for Spielberg, as he has consistently tried to get this to happen, most recently with the help of director Cary Fukunaga. However, after Fukunaga was accused of sexual misconduct, there were questions about whether it was still in the works. Thankfully, according to Spielberg, it’s still happening.
READ MORE: Cary Fukunaga Says TV Adaptation of Stanley Kubrick’s Unmade ‘Napoleon’ “Is Happening” With Scripts Already Written
Speaking at a press conference at the Berlin International Film Festival (via Deadline), Steven Spielberg explained that he doesn’t have a feature film project lined up next for him. However, he did confirm that “Napoleon” is heading toward production.
“We are mounting a large production for HBO, based on Stanley [Kubrick’s] original script for ‘Napoleon,’” he explained. “So, we are working on ‘Napoleon’ as a seven-part limited series.”
As mentioned, the fact that “Napoleon” is something Spielberg is trying to get made isn’t, in fact, news. However, after the Fukunaga controversy, it doesn’t appear that the project is being held up at all. Fukunaga was originally brought onto the project way back in 2016. Then, in 2021, he confirmed that scripts were written for the series and that it would likely happen soon. Obviously, COVID has really thrown everything into chaos, and only now are we getting back to some semblance of normalcy as far as Hollywood productions go.
However, with Fukunaga seemingly no longer involved (this hasn’t been confirmed, but seems to be safe speculation given the allegations against him), it’s unclear who might take the reins and bring “Napoleon” to life. If we want to keep our speculation hats on, why not suggest that Spielberg would be the right filmmaker for the project? Recently, he’s talked about wanting to work on a prestige TV project and he admitted that he doesn’t have a film project lined up right now. This could be the stars aligning for Spielberg to bring his passion project to life through his own directorial efforts.
Obviously, Spielberg has nothing but reverence for Kubrick’s work, as is clearly evident with how he brought “A.I.” to the big screen as a way to continue Kubrick’s legacy. So, why not take the reins of “Napoleon” and do it again?
We’ll have to wait and see what happens. Regardless of who is behind the camera, it does appear that, a decade later, “Napoleon” is inching ever so close to production.
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