Building on the success of its predecessor, The Three Musketeers: D'Artagnan, the film is the second installment of a two-part epic saga that breathes new life into the timeless 1844 novel. The star-studded cast, featuring François Civil, Vincent Cassel, Pio Marmaï, Romain Duris, and Eva Green, delivers riveting performances against the backdrop of a meticulously crafted production with a combined budget of €72 million.
The genesis of this grand cinematic venture can be traced back to 2019 when producer Dimitri Rassam envisioned a project that would ignite the big screen. A meeting with director Martin Bourboulon, set against the vibrant backdrop of a Parisian restaurant, laid the foundation for a film that would redefine the genre. Bourboulon, inspired by his childhood memories on the set of Revenge of the Musketeers in 1994, embarked on a journey to transform Dumas's classic into a contemporary thriller set in a world of violence.
The film marks the first French adaptation of The Three Musketeers in 62 years, since Bernard Borderie's two-part saga in 1961. Director Martin Bourboulon drew inspiration from a diverse range of films, including The Duellists, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Cyrano de Bergerac, La Reine Margot, Gladiator, and The Revenant, creating a unique blend of historical authenticity and modern sensibilities.
The Three Musketeers: Milady introduces a new character, Hannibal, portrayed by Ralph Amoussou, inspired by the true story of Louis Anniaba, the prince of Assinie and France's first Black musketeer. Pio Marmaï's portrayal of Porthos adds depth to the character, exploring his bisexuality in this version. The musketeers, brought to life by the exceptional cast, met for the first time in a manner reminiscent of the novel – crossing swords at a fencing lesson led by Olympic Épée champion Yannick Borel.
The journey to assemble this stellar cast began in February 2021, with François Civil being the first actor cast as D'Artagnan. Vincent Cassel, with a family history connected to The Three Musketeers, was cast as Athos, while Eva Green, known for her mysterious allure, brought Milady de Winter to life. The production team sought modernity and strong female characters, making Eva Green an ideal choice for the enigmatic Milady.
Filming, a monumental undertaking that spanned 150 days, unfolded across iconic French landmarks, including the Louvre Palace, the Hôtel des Invalides, and the historic city center of Troyes. Director Martin Bourboulon's commitment to authenticity is evident, with no digital effects used except to erase contemporary elements from the background.
Lead actor François Civil, embodying the iconic role of D'Artagnan, underwent six months of intense physical training, resulting in 90% of his stunts being performed by himself. Despite setbacks, including temporary blindness and a broken foot, Civil's dedication to the role shines through, creating a character that balances panache with a modern charm.
From the Louvre to Buckingham Palace, from the Parisian underworld to the siege of La Rochelle... in a Kingdom divided by the Wars of Religion and threatened with invasion by England, a handful of men and women will cross swords and link their destiny to that of France.
The Three Musketeers: Milady
Directed by Martin Bourboulon
Written by Matthieu Delaporte, Alexandre de La Patellière
Based on The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
Produced by Dimitri Rassam
Starring François Civil, Vincent Cassel, Pio Marmaï, Romain Duris, Eva Green
Cinematography : Nicolas Bolduc
Edited by Stan Collet
Music by Guillaume Roussel
Production companies : Pathé, Chapter 2, M6 Films, Constantin Film, DeAPlaneta, Umedia
Distributed by Pathé (France)
Release dates : 13 December 2023 (France)
Running time : 115 minutes
Photos : Copyright 2023 Chapter 2 Pathé films M6 Films - Ben King