Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Illustration for article titled Lets unpack this whimsical, detailed poster for Wes Andersons iThe French Dispatch/i
Photo: Lars Niki (Getty Images)

You’ll want to keep an eye on these parts tomorrow for an official trailer for Wes Anderson’s The French Dispatch, but the legendarily quirky filmmaker behind The Royal Tenenbaums and The Grand Budapest Hotel hopes to tide you over with a look at the film’s gorgeous poster.

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The fierce colors, encompassing tableau, and revealing detail is of the same ilk as the artwork that’s accompanied Anderson’s previous films, leading us to believe this is another work from the filmmaker’s brother, Eric Chase Anderson. You’ll see a whole slew of characters occupying the windows and streets of the fictional French city of the anthology, which, per a synopsis, “brings to life a collection of stories from the final issue of an American magazine.”

Have a look below.

Illustration for article titled Lets unpack this whimsical, detailed poster for Wes Andersons iThe French Dispatch/i
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It would appear, per the poster, that Jeffrey Wright, Bill Murray, and Frances McDormand are the booze-and-smoke-addled staff of that magazine. Tilda Swinton searches for her muse nearby, while a heavily bearded Benicio del Toro, a paint-splattered artist, does the same. A melancholic Owen Wilson, meanwhile, stares over the city from atop his bicycle, a camera dangling around his neck. A fellow bicyclist played by Lyna Khoudri reclines with a book below him, while, to her right, Timothée Chalamet does his best Margot Tenenbaum impression while writing in a bathtub, cigarette in his mouth. The French Dispatch, it would appear, will be, at least in part, about art and artists.

But not all seems so forlornly serene. Adrien Brody, clad in suit and tie, pensively stares at the fat stacks of cash on his table. Below him, a police officer played by Lea Seydoux stands before a revolver and a baton. Look closer and you’ll see police cats in pursuit of some gangsters, one of whom is unloading a tommy gun in their direction. A hearse carrying a body cruises in the opposite direction. And whoever this guy is?

Illustration for article titled Lets unpack this whimsical, detailed poster for Wes Andersons iThe French Dispatch/i

Looks like trouble.

Finally, there also appears to be a culinary component to the film. Stephen Park dons a chef hat while overseeing a smoking pot, while Mathieu Amalric sips wine below him, knife and fork in hand. In the streets, bloodied butchers hold chicken carcasses. Will they be served at Cafe Le Sans Blague (the No Kidding Cafe?)? Check, please.

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A few fresh names have been added to cast list as well, including Liev Schreiber, Elisabeth Moss, Willem Dafoe, Saoirse Ronan, Angelica Huston, and Henry Winkler, among others. Not bad gets!

The French Dispatch arrives in theaters on July 24.

UPDATE: The New Yorker has shared a flurry of images, as well as some new info regarding the characters, some of which renders our above guesses incorrect. For example, del Toro’s character is no mere painter, but rather a convict who sees Seydoux as his muse. Bill Murray, however, does play the French Dispatch’s editor, Arthur Howitzer Jr., and his staff includes Moss, Swinton, and Wilson, the latter of whom plays a writer modeled after The New Yorker’s late Joseph Mitchell. Jeffrey Wright’s Roebuck Wright, meanwhile, was inspired by both James Baldwin and A.J. Liebling. Chalamet and Khoudri play student revolutionaries.

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Furthermore, The New Yorker piece reveals that the film itself was directly inspired by The New Yorker. “Anderson has been a New Yorker devotee since he was a teen-ager, and has even amassed a vast collection of bound volumes of the magazine, going back to the nineteen-forties,” they write.

Finally, Anderson has named his fictional town Ennui-sur-Blasé, which rather loosely translates to Boredom-on-Bored.

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Randall Colburn is The A.V. Club's Internet Culture Editor. He lives in Chicago, occasionally writes plays, and was a talking head in Best Worst Movie, the documentary about Troll 2.

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