Winston Churchill has been played by several British actors from Albert Finney (The Gathering Storm) to Michael Gambon (Churchill's Secret), but never with quite the dedication to physical verisimilitude of Darkest Hour's Winston. Universal Pictures have recently released our first uncanny look at Gary Oldman (The Dark Knight Rises) as the man himself.
Directed by Joe Wright (Atonement), Darkest Hour is set in 1940, when Churchill was in his first days as Prime Minister. With Britain under serious threat from Germany and the tide looking likely to turn further, Churchill was under pressure to strike a deal with Adolf Hitler that would see Britain effectively become a Third Reich puppet stake. He wrestled with the decision and ultimately decided... well, we all know how it turned out.
The film has been a passion project of The Theory Of Everything (2014) writer Anthony McCarten for some time. As well as providing the screenplay he is also producing, along with Working Title's Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner (Les Misérables), and Lisa Bruce (The Theory of Everything).
"Darkest Hour is about a visionary leader who stood firm in the face of tremendous pressure to abandon his unique point of view on the world," explains Focus Features boss Peter Kujawski, "so it is fitting that his story will be told by these visionary filmmakers."
Alongside Oldman are Ben Mendelsohn (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story) as King George VI, John Hurt (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) as ex-PM Neville Chamberlain and Kristin Scott Thomas (The English Patient) as Churchill's stalwart wife Clementine.
Darkest Hour will be fighting them in the cinema aisles from 29 December.