Ravishing World War II period piece alert: The new film from director Simon Stone, “The Dig,” is coming to Netflix and some theaters next month. Oscar nominees Carey Mulligan and Ralph Fiennes play archaeologists who dig up a surprising discovery that has ramifications for the past, and fate, of Britain.
Here’s Netflix’s official synopsis: “As WWII looms, a wealthy widow (Carey Mulligan) hires an amateur archaeologist (Ralph Fiennes) to excavate the burial mounds on her estate. When they make a historic discovery, the echoes of Britain’s past resonate in the face of its uncertain future.”
Along with Mulligan and Fiennes, the cast includes Lily James (star of Netflix period piece “Rebecca”), Johnny Flynn, Ben Chaplin, Ken Stott, Archie Barnes, and Monica Dolan. “The Dig” is based on a book by John Preston, published in 2007 and set in the context of the 1939 Anglo-Saxon ship burial excavation at Sutton Hoo, Suffolk, England. The screenplay comes from decorated English dramatist Moira Buffini, the scribe behind Cary Fukunaga’s 2011 “Jane Eyre,” as well as the films “Byzantium” and “Viceroy’s House.” Buffini also co-created the period series “Harlots” that ended in 2019.
Stone, meanwhile, directed 2015’s “The Daughter,” and 2013’s “The Turning.” “The Dig” is set to release in select theaters on January 15, 2021, and will stream on Netflix on January 29. This means that the film is technically eligible for the 2021 Academy Awards. But the film hasn’t played any festivals, so who knows. This would add to Netflix’s sprawling awards slate, already bursting at the seams with “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” “Mank,” “Pieces of a Woman,” “The Prom,” “Da 5 Bloods,” “The Trial of the Chicago 7,” “The Life Ahead,” and many more.
“The Dig” star Mulligan is elsewhere deep in the awards conversation thanks to her upcoming turn in the post-#MeToo revenge dark comedy “Promising Young Woman.” Focus Features is releasing that Sundance hit on December 25.
Ralph Fiennes was last seen in 2019’s “Official Secrets,” and heard in 2020’s “Dolittle.” He’ll be seen later on next year in “The King’s man,” the latest installment in the “Kingsman” films from director Matthew Vaughn.
“The Dig” is produced by Gabrielle Tana (PGA), Ellie Wood, Murray Ferguson, and Carolyn Marks Blackwood.
Check out the trailer for “The Dig” below: