Reigning Best Picture studio champion Universal Pictures (“Green Book”) has released the new trailer for the epic war drama “1917” from Academy Award winner Sam Mendes (“American Beauty”).

The World War I epic takes place at the height of the devastating era.  Two young British soldiers Schofield (played by George McKay) and Blake (played by Dean-Charles Chapman) are given a seemingly impossible mission.  In a race against time, they must cross enemy territory and deliver a message that will stop a deadly attack on hundreds of soldiers, with Blake’s brother among them.

Alongside stars McKay and Chapman, the movie also stars Mark Strong, Andrew Scott, Richard Madden, Claire Duburcq, Oscar-winner Colin Firth, and Oscar-nominee Benedict Cumberbatch.

Directing, co-writing, and co-producing, Mendes, who has put his mark on spectacular cinema such as “Road to Perdition” and “Revolutionary Road,” is rumored to have put together his most exceptional achievement yet.  As reflected in this week’s updated awards predictions on the Circuit Hub, “1917” is currently listed in the top spot at the Oscars for Best Picture, Director, Cinematography (by Roger Deakins), and Original Score (by Thomas Newman).  The trio of Mendes, Deakins, and Newman marks their second outing together following the James Bond film “Skyfall.”  Deakins and Newman both received Oscar nominations for their work.  The only missing veteran craftsperson seems to be overdue sound mixer Greg P. Russell, who isn’t currently listed on the film’s credits via iMDB.  Deakins will also have his work showcased in John Crowley’s “The Goldfinch,” which is premiering at the Toronto International Film Festival in Sept. while Newman has already offered compositions earlier this year in “Tolkien” and “The Highwaymen.”

1917” is also co-written by Krysty Wilson-Cairns, best known for Showtime’s “Penny Dreadful.”  Also listed as producers are Pippa Harris (Executive Producer on “Away We Go”), Jayne-Ann Tenggren (who also is on “The Rhythm Section” from Reed Morano due out later in 2019), Callum McDougall (Executive Producer on “Mary Poppins Returns”), and Brian Oliver (who executive produced the summer hit “Rocketman” from Dexter Fletcher).

Universal Pictures will distribute the film in the United States, while Neal Street Productions, in association with New Republic Pictures, produces.  Universal and Amblin Partners will distribute internationally, with eOne distributing on behalf of Amblin in the United Kingdom.

“1917” opens in theaters on Dec. 25 in limited release before going wide on Jan. 10, 2020.

Are you excited for “1917?” Let us know in the comments below!