Stanley Kubrick’s Napoleon: The Greatest Movie Never Made

This could well be the ultimate Napoleon geek gift this year!

TASCHEN releases ten books in one tell the fascinating tale of Kubrick’s unfilmed masterpiece!

Tucked inside of a carved-out book, all the elements from Stanley Kubrick’s archives that readers need to imagine what his unmade film about the emperor might have been like, including a facsimile of the script. This collector’s edition is limited to 1,000 numbered copies.

For 40 years, Kubrick fans and film buffs have wondered about the director’s mysterious unmade film on Napoleon Bonaparte. Slated for production immediately following the release of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Kubrick’s “Napoleon” was to be at once a character study and a sweeping epic, replete with grandiose battle scenes featuring thousands of extras. To write his original screenplay, Kubrick embarked on two years of intensive research; with the help of dozens of assistants and an Oxford Napoleon specialist, he amassed an unparalleled trove of research and preproduction material, including approximately 15,000 location scouting photographs and 17,000 slides of Napoleonic imagery. No stone was left unturned in Kubrick’s nearly-obsessive quest to uncover every piece of information history had to offer about Napoleon. But alas, Kubrick’s movie was not destined to be: the film studios, first M.G.M. and then United Artists, decided such an undertaking was too risky at a time when historical epics were out of fashion.

TASCHEN’s sumptuous, limited-edition tribute to this unmade masterpiece makes Kubrick’s valiant work on “Napoleon” available to fans for the first time. Herein, readers can peruse a selection of Kubrick’s correspondence, various costume studies, location scouting photographs, research material, script drafts, and more, each category of material in its own book. Kubrick’s final draft is reproduced in facsimile while the other texts are tidily kenneled into one volume where they dare not interfere with the visual material. All of these books are tucked inside of—or shall we say hiding in?—a carved-out reproduction of a Napoleon history book.

The text book features the complete original treatment, essays examining the screenplay in historical and dramatic contexts, an essay by Jean Tulard on Napoleon in cinema, and a transcript of interviews Kubrick conducted with Oxford professor Felix Markham. The culmination of years of research and preparation, this unique publication offers readers a chance to experience the creative process of one of cinema’s greatest talents as well as a fascinating exploration of the enigmatic figure that was Napoleon Bonaparte.

*Includes exclusive access to searchable/downloadable online research database: Kubrick’s complete picture file of nearly 17,000 Napoleonic images*

(Images via TASCHEN)

The Napoleon Bonaparte Podcast #54 – Dr Philip Dwyer

Welcome back! It’s been a long time between shows, I’m so sorry! But you’ll LOVE this episode, trust me, it was worth waiting for!

Our guest today is Dr Philip Dwyer, Associate Professor, Faculty of Education and Arts, School of Humanities and Social Science, History Dept, University of Newscastle, Australia. Philip has a long list of credentials:

* Ph.D. University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia, 1993
* D.E.A. Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, (Diplôme d’Etudes Approfondies) Paris, 1989
* Maîtrise University of Paris-Sorbonne (Paris IV), Paris, 1988
* Licence University of Paris-Sorbonne (Paris IV), Paris, 1988
* B.A. Murdoch University, Perth, Australia, 1983

(see his profile page here).

Philip is also the author of “Napoleon: The Path To Power”

His book won the “National Biography Prize” in 2008.

David and I chatted with him last week about his perspectives on Napoleon. While we agreed on some things, we disagreed on other things and it lead to a passionate but always polite debate. 🙂

Please jump in the comments section of the show and let us know you’re still out there folks! We need to know if we should continue producing the show!

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