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Stanley Kubrick’s Napoleon

Edition of 1,000
Hardcover with 10 smaller books inserted, image database, 11.6 x 14.7 in., 23.82 lb, 2874 pages
US$ 3,000
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Stanley Kubrick boasted it would be “the best movie ever made.” Instead, his epic Napoleon was canceled before shooting began after years of intense planning. This is the fascinating archive of the greatest film that never was, including Kubrick correspondence, location scouting images, research, costume studies, and a facsimile of the final script draft.

Limited Collector’s Edition of 1,000 copies

The Greatest Movie Never Made

Ten books in one tell the fascinating tale of Kubrick’s unfilmed masterpiece

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 MGM and then United Artists, decided such an undertaking was too risky at a time when historical epics were out of fashion.

TASCHEN’s sumptuous Collector’s Edition tribute to this unmade masterpiece makes Kubrick’s valiant work available to fans for the first time. Readers can peruse a selection of Kubrick’s correspondence, various costume studies, location scouting photographs, research material, script drafts, and more, each category of material in its own book. Kubrick’s final draft is reproduced in facsimile while the other texts are tidily kenneled into one volume where they dare not interfere with the visual material. All of these books are tucked inside of—or shall we say hiding in?—a carved-out reproduction of a Napoleon history book.

The book of texts 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.

Limited Collector’s Edition of 1,000 copies
The designer

M/M (Paris) is an art and design partnership consisting of Mathias Augustyniak and Michael Amzalag. Their portfolio includes art direction and collaborations with Björk, Balenciaga, and Inez van Lamsweerde & Vinoodh Matadin, as well as with magazines including Vogue Paris, Interview, and Purple Fashion.

The editor

Alison Castle received a BA in philosophy from Columbia University and an MA in photography and film from NYU/International Center of Photography. She is editor of photography, film, and design titles, including Some Like It Hot, The Stanley Kubrick Archives, Linda McCartney. Life in Photographs, and Marc Newson. Works.

Stanley Kubrick’s Napoleon
Edition of 1,000
Hardcover with 10 smaller books inserted, image database, 11.6 x 14.7 in., 23.82 lb, 2874 pages
Stanley Kubrick’s Napoleon
Edition of 1,000
US$ 3,000