The Palace Int’l Trailer: First Look At Mickey Rourke, Fanny Ardant & John Cleese In Roman Polanski’s Venice-Bound Ensemble Satire On The Ultra-Rich

EXCLUSIVE: Deadline can reveal the international trailer for Roman Polanski’s ensemble dark comedy The Palace ahead of its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival in September.

Shot against the backdrop of Switzerland’s luxury Gstaad Palace hotel, the film unfolds in the lead-up to a lavish New Year Party on the eve of 2000.

Mickey Rourke is unveiled as a demanding client with a Trump-style blond wig; Fanny Ardant as a wealthy marquise fretting over her constipated chihuahua, and John Cleese as a business magnate, who pitches up with his much-younger, new bride (Bronwyn James) and a live penguin.

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The motley assortment of guests seeing in the new millennium also features a party of wealthy Russians (who tune into Vladimir Putin’s real-life News Year’s Eve Speech declaring he had been made interim president following Boris Yeltsin’s resignation), and a former porn star.

In the backdrop, the hotel manager (Oliver Masucci) presses his battalion of staff into action in a military style operation, while fears of the Millennium computer bug hang in the air.

Taking inspiration from his own stays at the Gstaad Palace, Polanski wrote the screenplay with Polish director Jerzy Skolimowski and producer Ewa Piaskowska. Longtime collaborator Alexandre Desplat composed the score.

The director, who remains a controversial figure following his flight from the U.S. in 1978 after pleading guilty to unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor, is not expected in Venice for the film’s Out of Competition Sala Grande world premiere on September 2.

Venice Artistic Director Alberto Barbera, who also invited Polanski’s last film An Officer And A Spy to the festival in 2019, has remained loyal to the director saying discussion over the 1978 charges is “useless”, noting the fact that his victim Samantha Geimer has “forgiven him multiple times”.

The feature is an Italian, Swiss, Polish and French co-production lead produced by Luca Barbareschi at Rome-based Èliseo Entertainment with Rai Cinema, Jean-Louis Porchet at CAB Productions, Wojciech Gostomczyk at Lucky BOB and RP Productions.

01 Distribution will release the film in Italy on September 28. Other territories have yet to be announced.

Goodfellas is handling international sales.

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