‘Rebecca’ First Look: Ben Wheatley’s Twist on Daphne du Maurier with Armie Hammer and Lily James

Ryan Lattanzio
·2 min read

Eighty years after mystery master Daphne du Maurier’s novel “Rebecca” was adapted by director Alfred Hitchcock into a now-classic movie for United Artists, filmmaker Ben Wheatley is returning to the source material for Netflix. “Rebecca,” releasing October 21 on the streaming platform, stars Lily James, Armie Hammer, Sam Riley, Kristin Scott Thomas (in the role of Mrs. Danvers that made Judith Anderson a wickedly iconic villain in the Hitchcock film), and Ann Dowd. Check out first look images from the film below.

Here’s Netflix’s official synopsis: “After a whirlwind romance in Monte Carlo with handsome widower Maxim de Winter (Armie Hammer), a newly married young woman (Lily James) arrives at Manderley, her new husband’s imposing family estate on a windswept English coast. Naive and inexperienced, she begins to settle into the trappings of her new life, but finds herself battling the shadow of Maxim’s first wife, the elegant and urbane Rebecca, whose haunting legacy is kept alive by Manderley’s sinister housekeeper Mrs. Danvers (Kristin Scott Thomas). Directed by Ben Wheatley (‘High Rise,’ ‘Free Fire’) and produced by Working Title Films (‘Emma,’ ‘Darkest Hour’), ‘Rebecca’ is a mesmerizing and gorgeously rendered psychological thriller based on Daphne du Maurier’s beloved 1938 gothic novel.”

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The screenplay is written by Jane Goldman (“Kick-Ass”), along with Joe Shrapnel and Anna Waterhouse (who together wrote “Seberg”). This is Brit director Ben Wheatley’s first film since 2016’s shoot-em-up “Free Fire,” though he since directed episodes of the CBS All Access series “Strange Angel.” Wheatley’s best (and best known) movies include “Kill List,” a terrifying and grim and surprise-filled cult horror movie, and “Sightseers,” a darkly quirky road movie, but he has also gone more experimental with films like the black-and-white “A Field in England” and the J.G. Ballard adaptation “High Rise.” “Free Fire” is currently streaming on Netflix, but with “Rebecca” arriving on the platform in October, expect the streamer to host more from his catalogue.

“Rebecca” the novel has been adapted several times since Hitchcock’s version, including a made-for-TV imagining in 1997. It served as the inspiration for the Bollywood Hindi film “Kohra,” among others, and has been presented in miniseries form.

Rebecca: (L to R) Director Ben Wheatley, Armie Hammer as Maxim de Winter, Lily James as Mrs. de Winter. Cr. KERRY BROWN/NETFLIX
Rebecca: (L to R) Director Ben Wheatley, Armie Hammer as Maxim de Winter, Lily James as Mrs. de Winter. Cr. KERRY BROWN/NETFLIX

“Rebecca”

Kerry Brown / Netflix

Rebecca: (L to R) Armie Hammer as Maxim de Winter, Lily James as Mrs. de Winter. Cr. KERRY BROWN/NETFLIX
Rebecca: (L to R) Armie Hammer as Maxim de Winter, Lily James as Mrs. de Winter. Cr. KERRY BROWN/NETFLIX

“Rebecca”

Kerry Brown / Netflix

Rebecca: Lily James as Mrs. de Winter, Cr. KERRY BROWN/NETFLIX
Rebecca: Lily James as Mrs. de Winter, Cr. KERRY BROWN/NETFLIX

“Rebecca”

Kerry Brown / Netflix

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