“Killers of the Flower Moon” is almost here. Apple released the second full trailer for the movie on Sept. 13, and it spotlights the relationship between Leonardo DiCaprio’s Ernest Burkhart and his wife, Lily Gladstone’s Mollie Burkhart. When Ernest returns to Osage land in Oklahoma, his uncle William Hale (Robert De Niro) tells him there’s a lot of money to be made off the Osage. But as murders start to pile up, Ernest and Mollie both start to feel the pressure.
“Killers of the Flower Moon” — which boasts a sprawling cast including Oscar winner Brendan Fraser, John Lithgow, and Jesse Plemons — is based on the bestselling nonfiction book of the same name written by David Grann, in which members of the Osage Nation are targeted and murdered by a serial killer in 1920s Oklahoma, seemingly because of the nation’s ties to oil. The string of crimes became known as the Reign of Terror. Grann’s book recalls the tale of how the modern-day FBI came out of the investigation into those murders.
Scorsese’s “Killers of the Flower Moon” began filming in 2021, and many expected it to be released last year. But now it’s one of the most highly anticipated movies of 2023 and expected to make waves in the eventual 2024 Oscars race. “Killers of the Flower Moon” is also the 26th full-length feature film that Scorsese has directed. The movie premiered at Cannes in May, where it received strong reviews, especially for Gladstone. On Aug. 29, Apple released two posters for the film, which will also play in IMAX as part of its theatrical release.
Back in January, Gladstone told Variety that Scorsese worked closely with the Osage Nation on the film and that those conversations changed his ultimate vision for “Killers of the Flower Moon.” “The work is better when you let the world inform the work,” said Gladstone, who is of Blackfeet and Nimíipuu heritage and grew up on a Blackfeet Nation reservation. “That was very refreshing how involved the production got with the [Osage Nation] community. As the community warmed up to our presence, the more the community got involved with the film. It’s a different movie than the one [Scorsese] walked in to make almost entirely because of what the community had to say about how it was being made and what was being portrayed.”
Grann’s book focuses on the murders mostly through the lens of the FBI investigation, but Scorsese told Time Magazine in an interview published Sept. 12 that doing it that way on film didn’t feel right. “After a certain point, I realized I was making a movie about all the white guys,” he told the outlet. “Meaning I was taking the approach from the outside in, which concerned me.” Working with DiCaprio, they realized the heart of the film was the tense relationship between Mollie and Ernest.
Ahead, here’s everything we know about “Killers of the Flower Moon.”