Adam Driver is ready to take on the role of Enzo Ferrari in the upcoming biopic of the Italian sports car entrepreneur.
Ferrari tells the story of the automotive titan and how he began to grow his car company following his retirement as a Formula 1 driver. However, Ferrari, the businessman, faces a series of crises as he begins his journey to success: from marriage woes to potential bankruptcy and even a deadly incident.
“Everything he’s been collides with what he might become, and the company has gone bust,” the director, Michael Mann, told Variety in August 2023. “His wife finds out about the other woman. It’s a spectacularly operatic melodrama in real life.”
The project is a special one for Mann, who has been wanting to make a film about Ferrari for years. In 2019, he was a consultant for the film Ford vs. Ferrari before getting to helm his own racing film. In his interview with Variety, Mann gushed about working with independent distributor Neon — which also released Parasite, I Tonya, Triangle of Sadness, and The Worst Person in the World — as the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes continue.
“The origins of the movie and the content of the screenplay and the movie that you saw do not fit into the kind of film that would be embraced by the conventional studio system,” Mann explained. “It’s truly appropriate that it is an independent film being distributed by Neon, a very independent distributor.”
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Ferrari tells the true story of the 1957 Mille Miglia race in Italy when racecar driver Alfonso de Portago blew a tire of his Ferrari sports car and crashed into the crowd. The incident killed nine people, including Portago, navigator Edmund Nelson and five children. Ferrari himself and the tire manufacturer were charged with manslaughter. The case was later dismissed.
The screenplay for the film was adapted from Brock Yates’ 1991 biography, Enzo Ferrari — The Man, The Cars, The Races, The Machine, which detailed the car expert’s life.
Driver stars as the titular character, while Penelope Cruz plays his wife, Laura Ferrari and Shailene Woodley portrays Enzo’s mistress Lina Lardi. Patrick Dempsey, Jack O’Connell, Sarah Gadon and Gabriel Leone also have roles in the film.
Mann will helm the film. Some of his other notable works include iconic movies like Heat, Miami Vice, The Last of the Mohicans, Blackhat and more.
Before hitting theaters on December 25, 2023, Ferrari will have a world premiere at the 80th Venice International Film Festival.
A teaser trailer for Ferrari dropped in August 2023. In the opening scene, Driver — who sports white hair and black sunglasses for the role — appears as he watches a red sports car cruise down the track. The clip continues to show a series of moments from the film with no dialogue; only the sound of a booming engine can be heard. In a flash, flames appear and Driver utters his first words.
“If you get into one of my cars, you get in to win,” Driver says before the screen fades to black.