Rupert Everett has played famed poet and playwright Oscar Wilde on multiple occasions, but they’ve all been leading up to his passion project “The Happy Prince.”
When speaking with The Hollywood Reporter he said, “As a gay person, it is a terribly important story to me personally because Oscar really was crucified by the society that had at first adored him.” And to Deadline, he spoke about why he was drawn to this moment in the iconic writer’s life. “The most exciting part is this riches-to-rags side of him. The terrible fall from being a huge celebrity to being on the streets to me was very romantic.”
The official synopsis says:
The last days of Oscar Wilde — and the ghosts that haunted them — are vividly evoked in Rupert Everett’s directorial debut. Everett gives a career defining performance as Wilde, physically and emotionally embodying the literary genius as he lives out his last days in exile in Europe. His body ailing and heavy, his mind spinning, he survives by falling back on the flamboyant irony and brilliant wit that defined him. As the film travels through Wilde’s final act and journeys through England, France and Italy, desire and loyalty face off, the transience of lust is laid bare, and the true riches of love are revealed.
The film’s cast is full of British all-stars like Everett, Colin Firth, Emily Watson, Colin Morgan, Edwin Thomas, Tom Wilkinson, and Anna Chancellor.
Everett has previously written two memoirs, “Red Carpets and Other Banana Skins” and “Vanished Years,” but “The Happy Prince” is Everett’s first foray into both screenwriting and directing. The film had its premiere earlier this year at the Sundance Film Festival to generally positive reviews. Our review of it highlighted Everett’s “cinematic skill in fashioning a period biopic about the last days of Oscar Wilde” and that he “gives an impassioned performance as the legendary literary icon.”
Sony Pictures Classics will release “The Happy Prince” on October 5. Take a look at the new trailer below: