Joel Coen argues that he and his brother owe much of their career to home formats, and as such, is respectful of their contribution to his success.

Joel Coen’s The Tragedy Of Macbeth is the latest screen incarnation of the classic Shakespearean tale of bloody horror and violent betrayal. With early reviews looking very strong, the film looks set to continue a strong cinematic tradition for ‘The Scottish Play’, with Denzel Washington in the title role, joining the ranks of other fine actors to portray the character on screen, including Patrick Stewart and Michael Fassbender.

We’ve already seen the film’s hauntingly-beautiful teaser trailer and the film itself will premiere in cinemas from Christmas Day, 2021 (in the US at least), before arriving on Apple TV+ on January 14th. The Tragedy Of Macbeth received its world premiere at the New York Film Festival last week, and with its black and white, highly cinematic style, naturally, there are those questioning whether this should be a film that moves so quickly onto Apple’s streaming platform.

Director Joel Coen has responded to those questions, stating that “when I first got into the movie business, it’s been almost 40 years ago. The reason I was able to make movies with Ethan, the reason we were able to have a career, is because the studios at that point had an ancillary market that was a backstop for more risky films, which were VHS cassettes and all of these home video markets, which is essentially television. So the fact that those markets are sort of responsible for my career… I’m not gonna bust on them now because they’ve become very successful, you know, and they’re sort of overtaking the market. I mean, it’s the reason I’m here, and able to do this.

So, I have mixed feelings about it, obviously, which is, the first thing, you want people to see it on a big screen. But the other part of it is, that’s been part of the history of our movies since the very beginning.”

It’s a fair point, although we’ll likely still be seeking out a cinema to catch The Tragedy Of Macbeth when it launches in December.


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