Peter Dinklage delivers devastating 17th century diss poem in Cyrano clip
He may not be lucky in love, but Cyrano de Bergerac sure knows how to make an entrance.
EW has the exclusive sneak peek at the title character's first big moment in the upcoming musical romantic drama Cyrano. In the clip above, Peter Dinklage's Cyrano lays down an epic diss poem at his favorite local theater when he takes umbrage with its creative direction.
"This is the first time we see Cyrano; there's been a lot of talk about him and we've built up to his introduction," director Joe Wright tells EW of the moment. "We've heard his voice and his words but have not seen him, which is kind of metaphoric of the film as a whole. Cyrano has great bravado and showmanship when in front of an audience, but is incapable of intimacy."
The film, an adaptation of the stage musical by Erica Schmidt (which itself was based on the classic 1897 play Cyrano de Bergerac), centers on a love triangle between Cyrano, a beautiful woman named Roxanne (Haley Bennett), and a handsome new cadet named Christian (Kelvin Harrison Jr.). Cyrano, an officer in the French army, is deeply in love with Roxanne, but, because of his physical appearance, assumes she would never love him back. So when she confides in him that she is in love with Christian, Cyrano, an accomplished wordsmith, helps Christian woo her by writing letters for him to send to her.
Cyrano's talent for wordplay is on full display in the clip, and throughout the film as a whole, which presented a unique challenge for Dinklage and Wright during filming.
"The interesting thing about the poetry is that it's somewhere between spoken word and song. It has a definite rhythm and we chose, like dance, to match the actions to the rhythm of the words, and built to the crescendo of the song that Cyrano sings while sword fighting later in the scene," Wright explains. "Pete and I worked on the difference between when he's playing the outward expression of Cyrano and the small moments when we allow him to reveal the heartbreak behind the mask."
Cyrano also stars Ben Mendelsohn and Bashir Salahuddin. Dinklage and Bennett reprised their roles from the original stage version of the musical. The score for the film was written by Bryce and Aaron Dessner of the National, with songs from the Dessners, Matt Berninger, and Carin Besser.
Cyrano opens in select theaters on Friday, Jan. 28, and goes wide on Friday, Feb. 11.
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