The greatest movie never made

The fascinating tale of Kubrick’s unfilmed masterpiece

Now available in a single-volume trade edition!

For 40 years, Kubrick fans and film buffs have wondered about the director’s mysterious unmade film on Napoleon Bonaparte. Slated for production immediately following the release of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Kubrick’s "Napoleon" was to be at once a character study and a sweeping epic, replete with grandiose battle scenes featuring thousands of extras. To write his original screenplay, Kubrick embarked on two years of intensive research; with the help of dozens of assistants and an Oxford Napoleon specialist, he amassed an unparalleled trove of research and preproduction material, including approximately 15,000 location scouting photographs and 17,000 slides of Napoleonic imagery. No stone was left unturned in Kubrick’s nearly-obsessive quest to uncover every piece of information history had to offer about Napoleon. But alas, Kubrick’s movie was not destined to be: the film studios, first M.G.M. and then United Artists, decided such an undertaking was too risky at a time when historical epics were out of fashion.

TASCHEN’s tribute to this unmade masterpiece makes Kubrick’s valiant work on "Napoleon" available to fans for the first time. Based on the original 2009 limited edition which featured ten books hidden inside of a carved out reproduction of a Napoleon history book, this publication brings all the original elements together in one volume. Herein, all of the books from the original edition are reproduced in facsimile: correspondence, costume studies, location scouting photographs, research material, script drafts, and more. Kubrick’s final draft is reproduced in its entirety.

The text book features the complete original treatment, essays examining the screenplay in historical and dramatic contexts, an essay by Jean Tulard on Napoleon in cinema, and a transcript of interviews Kubrick conducted with Oxford professor Felix Markham. The culmination of years of research and preparation, this unique publication offers readers a chance to experience the creative process of one of cinema’s greatest talents as well as a fascinating exploration of the enigmatic figure that was Napoleon Bonaparte.

*Includes access to searchable/downloadable online research database: Kubrick’s complete picture file of nearly 17,000 Napoleonic images*
The designer:
Established in Paris in 1992, M/M Paris is an art and design partnership consisting of Mathias Augustyniak and Michael Amzalag. They are best known for their art direction and collaborations with musicians, fashion designers, and contemporary artists, including Björk, Madonna, Yohji Yamamoto, Balenciaga, Pierre Huyghe, and Inez van Lamsweerde & Vinoodh Matadin, as well as magazines including Vogue Paris, Interview, and Purple Fashion. In addition to solo shows in galleries in Europe and Japan, they have participated in exhibitions at Centre Pompidou and Guggenheim New York, and their work is featured in public collections around the world.

The editor:
Alison Castle received a BA in philosophy from Columbia University and an MA in photography and film from New York University (NYU/International Center of Photography masters program). She is the editor of titles on photography, film, and design, including Some Like it Hot, The Stanley Kubrick Archives, Linda McCartney: Life in Photographs, and Marc Newson: Works.
Stanley Kubrick's Napoleon. The Greatest Movie Never Made (Jumbo)

Stanley Kubrick's Napoleon. The Greatest Movie Never Made

M/M Paris, Alison Castle
Hardcover with keycard, 8.3 x 13.5 in., 1112 pages
$ 69.99

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  • Reviews
"This is something so fantastic, that I want to stay alive at least till this book comes out. Documentation, the script, his notes, landscape photos, costumes, you name it and it’s all in this incredible book."
— booksoup.com, Los Angeles, United States
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  • Videos
Stanley Kubrick's Napoleon
The Greatest Movie Never Made. Kubrick's unfilmed masterpiece. By Alison Castle. September 2009
  • What's up
Exhibition
Stanley Kubrick
May 04, 2014 - September 14, 2014
National Museum in Cracow, 1, 3 Maja Av., Poland