MGM Studios has released a trailer for Cyrano starring Peter Dinklage and Hayley Bennett. Directed by Joe Wright from a script by Erica Schmidt, the drama musical is based on Schmidt’s 2018 stage musical of the same name. This is in turn is inspired by the 1897 Edmond Rostand play Cyrano de Bergerac.
The trailer was shared on the Cyrano Twitter account and invites viewers to “Experience the greatest love story ever told.”
The story follows Cyrano de Bergerac (Peter Dinklage), a man ahead of his time who dazzles with his ferocious wordplay in any verbal joust, or with brilliant swordplay in a duel. Sadly, he is convinced that his physical appearance renders him unworthy of the love of a devoted friend, the luminous Roxanne (Haley Bennett). While Cyrano struggles to declare his feelings for her, Roxanne sees and immediately falls in love with Christian (Kelvin Harrison, Jr.). So like any good friend, Cyrano uses his poetry to help the witless Christian woo her instead.
While the original story’s protagonist has an oversized nose, screenwriter Erica Schmidt reimagines Cyrano as someone with achondroplasia. As such, she recruited her own husband to play the lead role. Starring alongside Peter Dinklage and Haley Bennett are Kelvin Harrison Jr., Bashir Salahuddin, and Ben Mendelsohn.
In the trailer, Peter Dinklage is seen at his most heroic, answering taunts like “you’re a freak” with some deft swordsmanship. But the love-struck writer is still plagued by self-doubt. “The world will never accept someone like me and a tall, beautiful woman,” he explains. Then Christian arrives and further complicates matters for Cyrano.
Unlike the original play (Cyrano de Bergerac), the Peter Dinklage starrer will be a large-scale musical, with songs composed by The National’s Bryce and Aaron Dessner. The music and elaborate choreography, amid the lavish European setting, are featured prominently in the trailer.
Interestingly, Edmond Rostand’s play has been reimagined several times, inspiring various film adaptations. The 1987 comedy Roxanne, starring Steve Martin and Daryl Hannah added a happy ending that moves away from the tragic play. Other more modern versions such as Netflix’s Sierra Burgess is a Loser and The Half of It, introduce elements like texting and catfishing to the classic story.
It will be refreshing to see Peter Dinklage’s interpretation of Cyrano without the physical gimmicks used in previous adaptations. He is an incredible actor and shines in complex emotional roles. Since his professional breakthrough, the actor has appeared in 2003’s Elf, Lassie in 2005, and Find Me Guilty in 2006.
Peter Dinklage’s impressive list of credits also includes The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, Death at a Funeral, X-Men: Days of Future Past, Pixels, and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. In 2018, he appeared as Eitri in the Marvel Cinematic Universe film Avengers: Infinity War and Hervé Villechaize in the biopic film My Dinner with Hervé.
Cyrano starring Peter Dinklage had its world premiere at the 48th Telluride Film Festival in September and will hit select theaters on December 31, 2021.