Italian filmmaker Luca Guadagnino has proven himself to be one of the best directors in the film industry time and again. His films are characterized by their emotional complexity, eroticism, and sumptuous visuals. Adhering to his unique style, the filmmaker is all set with his upcoming film, “Queer,” starring Daniel Craig and Drew Starkey. The film is all set to have its world premiere at the 81st Venice Film Festival.

What is Luca Guadagnino’s upcoming film ‘Queer’ all about?

Luca Guadagnino’s new film “Queer” is an adaptation of William S. Burroughs’ 1953 novel of the same name. Considering the heavy homosexual content and theme of the novel, it was doubtful whether much of the content could be published in the US at that time, as it could be held as obscene. However, it was eventually published almost three decades later, in 1985.

The novel was loosely inspired by Burroughs’ own life and his time spent in Mexico, surviving on the subsidies handed out by the US government following World War II, not to mention his struggles and dependence on heroin.

In December 2022, it was announced that Luca Guadagnino would be directing a film adaptation of the novel, with Daniel Craig starring in the lead role. In April 2023, Drew Starkey was cast in the film as Allerton, along with Lesley Manville, Jason Schwartzman, and Henry Zaga, with plans to begin shooting in April 2023.

Recently, during an interview with Cinecitta, he discussed his upcoming film “Queer” and shared that the sex scenes he shot are “numerous and quite scandalous.” The filmmaker said, “Queer” will be my most personal film. It’s an homage to Powell and Pressburger. I’ve seen “The Red Shoes” at least 50 times, and I think they’d appreciate the sex scenes of “Queer,” which are numerous and quite scandalous.”

Guadagnino mentioned “The Red Shoes,” a 1948 British drama film written, directed, and produced by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger. The film received five Academy Award nominations, including wins for Best Original Score and Best Art Direction. Retrospectively, “The Red Shoes” is regarded as one of the best films of Powell and Pressburger’s partnership and one of the greatest films of all time.

As for “Queer,” it marks the reunion of Challengers collaborators, including writer Justin Kuritzkes, cinematographer Sayombhu Mukdeeprom, composers Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, and editor Marco Costa. The film is set in 1940s Mexico City, following William Lee (Craig), a man afflicted with both acute heroin withdrawal and romantic and sexual yearnings for an indifferent user named Eugene Allerton (Starkey). With a cast that also includes Lesley Manville, Jason Schwartzman, and Henry Zaga, it’s now revealed that three directors will also have roles: David Lowery, Ariel Schulman, and Lisandro Alonso.

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