The official trailer for Masters of the Air just dropped today, and the World War II miniseries looks like it’s going to be absolutely epic. Executive produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks, the upcoming miniseries will serve as a companion piece to HBO’s Band of Brothers (2001) and The Pacific (2010). Masters of the Air will stream exclusively on Apple TV+, and the nine-episode run is slated for a January 26, 2024 release.
The series will be based on the 2007 Donald Miller book, Masters of the Air: America’s Bomber Boys Who Fought The Air War Against Nazi Germany, and has been in development since 2013. Centrally focusing on the 100th Bombardment Group of the Eighth Air Force, the Masters of the Air will boast a nine-episode run, with a reported production cost of $250 million. And when you take a look at the stunning action sequences highlighted in the trailer, it’s evident that the money involved in producing this miniseries has been well spent.
Masters of the Air will boast an all-star cast including, but not limited to: Austin Butler, Callum Turner, Anthony Boyle and Nate Mann, Raff Law, Barry Keoghan, Josiah Cross, Branden Cook, and Ncuti Gatwa. Though the miniseries won’t be distributed by HBO like the two Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg produced miniseries that preceded it, it looks like it will fully embody the same spirit of realism and expertly executed cinematography that both Band of Brothers and The Pacific are so well known and highly regarded for.
Major Harry Crosby’s (Anthony Boyle) voice-over in the trailer clearly spells out the plot when he states, “we came from every corner of the country with a common purpose: to bring the war to Hitler’s doorstep.” A significant amount of the action will take place 25,000 feet in the air, as the 100th Bomb Group execute bombing raids over Nazi Germany and come face-to-face with the horrors of war and Hitler’s Third Reich. The series will chronicle the lives of the young men who made the ultimate sacrifice in this historic battle between good and evil.
And given the reported budget, it’s safe to say that Masters of the Air will boast feature-film production across all nine episodes. By the looks of it, the 128-second trailer has enough gunfire, airplane action, collapsed buildings, and explosions to finance a small country. But it’s not going to be all violence and destruction, as we will be presented with an emotional throughline that emphasizes the struggles that young recruits face in combat and on a personal level.
Before Masters of the Air, we’ve seen Tom Hanks work under Steven Spielberg‘s direction in films like Saving Private Ryan, which is arguably one of the most iconic films to have ever depicted the horrors of World War II to date. They’ve also famously worked together in this capacity on thought-provoking films like Catch Me If You Can, The Terminal, Bridge of Spies, and The Post, all of which were critically acclaimed.
As co-producers, Hanks and Spielberg worked on 2001’s Band of Brothers, which was nominated for twenty Primetime Emmy Awards, winning seven. 2010’s The Pacific was an equally successful miniseries, receiving dozens of its own nominations, winning eight Primetime Emmy Awards.
If past work is any indication of future performance, it goes without question that Masters of the Air will make similar waves upon its January 26, 2024 release on Apple TV+.