David Fincher Takes on the Making of Citizen Kane for Netflix

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David Fincher (Seven, The Social Network) is back with Mank, his first new movie in six years, and Netflix has just released the first trailer. Fincher is re-teaming with the streaming service for his latest directorial effort, which takes a look at 1930s Hollywood through the eyes of screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz, played by Oscar-winner Gary Oldman (Darkest Hour, The Dark Knight. Mankiewicz is known best for writing Citizen Kane, director Orson Welles’ timeless classic. As such, the movie will be heavily focused on the making of what is widely considered to be one of the greatest pieces of cinema ever made.

The trailer kicks off with an old-school logo to immerse us in the time period. The movie is done entirely in black and white. We open with Herman laid up in a hospital bed, with Orson Welles paying him a visit, and seemingly not a friendly one. It then becomes a rapid collection of shots and various lines from the movie that merely help to set the tone, though they don’t offer a great grip on the narrative at play. But it does appear that Fincher has perfectly captured the vibe of old-school Hollywood.

RELATED: New Mank Trailer Shows Gary Oldman Unraveling in David Fincher’s Citizen Kane Exposé

The movie has lined up an all-star cast. It includes Amanda Seyfried as Marion Davies, Lily Collins as Rita Alexander, Arliss Howard as Louis B. Mayer, Tom Pelphrey as Joe Mankiewicz, Sam Troughton as John Houseman, Ferdinand Kingsley as Irving Thalberg, Tuppence Middleton as Sara Mankiewicz, Tom Burke as Orson Welles, Joseph Cross as Charles Lederer, Jamie Mcshane as Shelly Metcalf, Toby Leonard Moore as David O. Selznick, Monika Gossmann as Fraulein Freda and Charles Dance as William Randolph Hearst. Jack Fincher, son of David Fincher, penned the screenplay.

Mank takes place in 1930s Hollywood and serves to re-evaluate the time period. We see it through the eyes of scathing social critic and alcoholic screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz as he races to finish the screenplay of Citizen Kane for Orson Welles. Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross are on board to provide the score. The duo have worked with David Fincher several times in the past, including on The Social Network and The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.

David Fincher has a long-standing relationship with Netflix. He collaborated with them on House of Cards, one of the company’s first forays into original content. Fincher also worked with the streaming service on the acclaimed true-crime series Mindhunter and the animated Love, Death & Robots. Fincher’s last feature was 2014’s Gone Girl, which was a major critical and financial success.

This is instantly positioned as a possible awards season contender. Granted, 2020 has not been a typical year, to say the very least of it, but a new David Fincher movie, in any year, would likely be an Oscar favorite. Netflix will be giving the movie an Oscar-qualifying run in theaters this November. As for the rest of the world, Mank will arrive on December 4 on the Netflix streaming service. Be sure to check out the new trailer for yourself.

Ryan Scott at Movieweb



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