Chevalier, a historical biopic about composer Joseph Bologne that was filmed in and around Prague in 2021, debuts theatrically this weekend in the United States after bowing in select European locales earlier this month.
Chevalier was shot at Prague’s Barrandov Studio, with location filming also taking place throughout the Czech capital, which filled in for 18th century Paris. The film premiered at last year’s Toronto International Film Festival.
In addition to Prague, filming for Chevalier took place at historic locations throughout the Czech Republic, including tourist hotspots Český Krumlov and Kutná Hora. The production also utilized the stately Valtice castle complex in South Moravia and nearby Buchlovice Castle in the Zlín Region.
Filming for Chevalier took place in Prague and other locations in the Czech Republic from September 7 through November 12, 2021. Stillking Films coordinated the local production for Searchlight Pictures.
Chevalier stars Kelvin Harrison Jr. as French-Caribbean violinist and composer Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges, one of the earliest musicians of African descent to achieve widespread acclaim throughout Europe.
The production also stars Lucy Boynton as Marie Antoinette, an initial supporter of Bologne, and Samara Weaving, Minnie Driver, Marton Csokas, and Alex Fitzalan as other real-life figures from the Old Regime in 18th century France.
Reviews for the film have been largely positive, with many singling out the historic Czech locations, sets, and costumes utilized for the production. Chevalier currently has a 82% fresh score on Rotten Tomatoes, and a 68 rating on Metacritic.
“Jess Hall’s camera spins rapturously through Karen Murphy’s luxurious interiors, lovingly beholding Oliver Garcia’s opulent costumes,” writes Mark Jenkins for the Washington Post. “On some level, Chevalier understands that the reign of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette was the bad old days. Yet it just can’t help but make them look really good.”
“With Oliver Garcia’s exquisite costumes and Karen Murphy’s production design, both brought alive to their full potential by Jess Hall’s stunning cinematography, Chevalier is not just a compelling story, it’s a visually compelling one too,” says Collider’s Maggie Lovitt.
“With sumptuous costumes and sets that place us squarely within the decadent world of that famed and ill-fated monarch, Chevalier deals with Bologne’s impossible task of succeeding in such a space,” notes Manuel Betancourt for A.V. Club.
Unfortunately, Chevalier is not scheduled to have an official release in Prague cinemas. Look for it to debut on Disney+ in the Czech Republic (and Hulu in the states) within the next few months.