Baz Luhrmann to direct new Master and Margarita movie

Baz Luhrmann to direct new Master and Margarita movie
Still from Master and Margarita (2005)

12 December 2019

Australian director and producer Baz Luhrmann will direct a film adaptation of Mikhail Bulgakov’s much-loved novel The Master and Margarita.

Luhrmann has partnered with copyright holders for the book, Grace Loh and Svetlana Migunova-Dali, who previously worked on Russian hockey biopic, Legend No. 17.

Published in 1967, The Master and Margarita traces the devil’s visit to the USSR. As well as being a surrealist exploration of Christian history and morality, the book is also a political satire of Soviet society. Written during Joseph Stalin’s rule — and, some claim, especially for the dictator, who might have inspired the character embodying Satan — the novel was at first banned and only appeared in print posthumously.

“Stretching back almost 20 years, I’ve had an incredible connection with the story of The Master and Margarita and have long sought the rights to this extraordinary book,” Luhrmann told entertainment news site Deadline. “I’m thrilled to finally have the opportunity to do an interpretation of this groundbreaking work.”

He tweeted a quote from the novel — “Manuscripts don’t burn” — accompanied by an illustration of the novel’s infamous black cat character, Behemoth.

Luhrmann rose to fame as the director of Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge! and The Great Gatsby. His next film is a biopic of Elvis Presley.

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