‘Ironbow’ to Recount William Tell Legend
William Tell is finally getting his due as Justin Chadwick (Bleak House) has signed on to direct Ironbow: The Legend of William Tell. He will work from Jay Wolpert’s (The Count of Monte Cristo) script about the marksman who was forced to shoot an apple from atop his son’s head.
Spyglass will produce the film with no studio or release date announced. Casting is expected to begin shortly.
The Hollywood Reporter offered up a concise recap of the tale: “The William Tell legend centers on a crossbow marksman who, when he would not bow to Austrian rule, was forced to shoot an apple off his son’s head in exchange for freedom. The local overlord who commanded the act noticed that Tell had a second arrow in his quiver, which Tell told him was meant for the overlord if the son was killed. Tell was promptly arrested but eventually escaped and killed the overlord, sparking a rebellion that led to the formation of the Swiss Confederation.”
The story is now considered fiction by historians who can find no authoritative evidence of Tell’s existence. He has remained an inspiration, his story told and retold from stage to screen. The first film adaptation came from French director Charles Pathé in 1900 while the most recent interpretation was the German-language Tell, in 2007.