Director George Miller had a late-career renaissance with Mad Max: Fury Road in 2015, but audiences have had to wait seven years for his next film. That long period of time will come to an end this week when Miller’s new movie, Three Thousand Years of Longing, makes its theatrical debut. Tilda Swinton stars as Alithea Binnie, an ordinary woman who makes the discovery of a lifetime: a truly magical bottle, complete with a real djinn inside. As you can see in the clip below, Alithea had no idea what was going to happen when she released the djinn. But her world is about to change.
Although the preview scene doesn’t show the djinn’s face, he is played by Idris Elba in the film. The djinn has an intriguing offer for Alithea: Three wishes in exchange for his freedom. Understandably, the djinn doesn’t want to be bottled up for another thousand years or so. However, Alithea faces two key questions: What does she want to wish for? And can she trust the djinn? After all, nearly every story about wish fulfillment is usually a cautionary tale. Sometimes brutally so.
In the behind-the-scenes featurette below, Swinton and Elba praise Miller’s direction on the film. It also shows off the true scale of the story. While Alithea and the djinn are confined to a hotel room, he shows her visions of the past that illustrate how his previous masters dealt with the offer he presented to them. Let’s just say that not all of them made the right choices.
Miller also co-wrote the script with Augusta Gore, which is based on A. S. Byatt’s The Djinn in the Nightingale’s Eye. Three Thousand Years of Longing will hit theaters this Friday, August 26.