Announced last year, the Coen Brothers Joel and Ethan revealed plans to release an anthology Western series on Netflix, entitled ‘The Balla of Buster Scruggs’. Now, the short series that would be written and directed by the duo is set to be changed into a full-length feature film.
“We’ve always loved anthology movies, especially those films made in Italy in the Sixties which set side-by-side the work of different directors on a common theme,” the Coens said in a statement. “Having written an anthology of Western stories we attempted to do the same, hoping to enlist the best directors working today. It was our great fortune that they both agreed to participate.”
The feature film will premiere at the Venice Film Festival just in time for the Oscar season, keeping the same format as the original plans for the series. It will maintain a chaptered anthology structure, starring Zoe Kazan, Liam Neeson, and Tom Waits. There has been no word on the plot of the film however, but a simple summary reading, “saddle up for six tales about the American frontier.”
“The film is expected to hit Netflix’s streaming service by year’s end along with the requisite theatrical release to qualify for Oscar consideration,” Variety reports. “Cinematographer Bruno Delbonnel (Inside Llewyn Davis, Darkest Hour) shot the film with the Arri Alexa camera, making Buster Scruggs the Coens’ first-ever digital photography production. The Coens tapped their usual artisan department heads on the picture, including production designer Jess Gonchor, costume designer Mary Zophres and composer Carter Burwell, all former Academy Award nominees.”
The Venice Film Festival is in its 75th year, and will run from August 29 to September 8.