Denzel Washington could be headed towards an awards-season run with his next movie that teams him with a great director, star-studded cast, and timeless classic story into what looks like a remarkably artistic film. And now it appears there will be a chance to see it on the biggest screens of all, but the window to catch it will be a short one. Deadline is reporting that The Tragedy of Macbeth is set for a one-day screening in Imax theaters across the globe on December 5th of this year. After that, it will have a limited theater run and then will hit AppleTV+ on January 14th. The Imax event will take place in the United States in 22 select locations.
Apparently, this Imax release for The Tragedy of Macbeth will also feature a live-streamed question and answer event with Frances McDormand who co-stars with Denzel Washington. The two play Lord and Lady Macbeth, the couple vying for the crown of Scotland at the behest of a trio of witches. The film is adapted, of course, from the Shakespearean classic Macbeth. Joel Coen is on as director and he also adapted the screenplay. It’s his first solo directorial work, not working with his brother Ethan.
The timing of The Tragedy of Macbeth to release close to the holiday season and in select theaters, including this Imax event, is meant to have it qualify come awards season. This much is obvious and has become something of an outline for movies that want to be part of the discussion when the Academy Awards come a-calling. Based on the content, the players involved, and the artistic source material we could be seeing folks like Denzel Washington, Frances McDormand, and Joel Coen getting called up to the big stage when it is all said and done.
Joining Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand in the cast will be Corey Hawkins as Macduff, Macbeth’s foil who starts as antagonist though the line between that and the actual antagonist is a blurred one in this story. Brendan Gleeson will play King Duncan, Harry Welling is on as Malcolm, Moses Ingram is Lady Macduff and Kathryn Hunter plays the role of all three witches.
And besides just the timing of the movie that hints at some major award consideration, early reception to The Tragedy of Macbeth has been overwhelmingly positive. It’s sitting at a cool 98% on Rotten Tomatoes through 54 reviews. Critics have praised nearly everything about the film including the star turns by Denzel Washington and McDormand as well as the overall cinematography which is bleak, dark, and haunting. The early trailers for the film have pointed to as much: a stripped-down and shadowy affair that plays along the script’s dark themes.
If Denzel Washington did receive an Academy Award for his role in The Tragedy of Macbeth, it wouldn’t be the first for the iconic actor. He’s taken it home twice so far for his roles in Training Day as well as Glory. And he’s been nominated six more times for roles in Cry Freedom, Malcolm X, The Hurricane, Flight, Fences, and Roman J. Israel, Esq. You can see him take maybe his next turn when The Tragedy of Macbeth hits Imax and other big screens on December 5th.