The young Arthur runs the back passages of Londinium with his crew, not knowing his royal lineage until he grabs Caliburn. Instantly confronted by the sword’s influence, Arthur is forced to decide where to become involved with his power. Throwing in with the Resistance and an enigmatic young woman named Guinevere, he must learn to master the sword, face down his demons and unite the people to defeat the tyrant Vortigern (who murdered his parents and stole his crown) and become king.
Idris Elba was in talks to play a Merlin-esque figure who trains and mentors Arthur. When Elba did not sign on to the film, the director continued to look for an actor to play the role. Charlie Hunnam, Ritchie's choice for the role, will play King Arthur. Elizabeth Olsen was in talks for the female lead. However, on September 18, it was Àstrid Bergès-Frisbey who was cast to play Guinevere. On November 14, Jude Law was in talks to play the lead villain role in the film. On February 11, 2015, Eric Bana was added to the cast to play Uther, the father of King Arthur. Mikael Persbrandt joined the film on March 6, 2015 to play a villainous role.
Filming in Windsor Great Park was underway in February 2015, then later in North Wales from March 2, 2015. Later on March 10, 2015, Ritchie tweeted a photo and confirmed the first day of shooting. In April 2015, filming took place in Snowdonia, where locations used were Tryfan, Nant Gwynant near Beddgelert and Capel Curig. Early in July filming continued in the Shieldaig, Loch Torridon and Applecross areas of Wester Ross in the Scottish Highlands. One day of filming also took place at The Quiraing on the Isle of Skye. Filming also took place at Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden.
The film was originally scheduled to be released on July 22, 2016 release, but on December 21, Warner Bros. moved the date to February 17, 2017 alongside Bad Boys 3 and Maze Runner: The Death Cure. On January 21, 2016, Warner Bros. announced it would be pushed back to March 24, 2017. However, since December 2016, the release was pushed back from March 24, 2017 to May 12, 2017, possibly so as not to compete with CHiPs. King Arthur premiered at the Grauman's Chinese Theatre on May 8, 2017. It was theatrically released in 2D and RealD 3D on May 12, 2017 in the United States and May 19, 2017 in the United Kingdom. The film was shown at select AMC Theatres in a special preview on April 27, 2017, in a promotional event titled "King for a Day"; demand for tickets led AMC to expand the event to 200 theaters.
As of May 29, 2017, King Arthur: Legend of the Sword has grossed $34.8 million in the United States and Canada and $85.2 million in other territories for a worldwide total of $120 million, against a production budget of $175 million. Steven Mnuchin, the United States Secretary of the Treasury in the Trump administration, was an executive producer of the film.
Cast of King Arthur
- Charlie Hunnam as King Arthur, Uther's son, Vortigern's nephew and the would-be king of Britain who was raised by prostitutes.
- Eric Bana as Uther Pendragon, Vortigern's brother, Arthur's father and the king of Britain.
- Poppy Delevingne as Igraine, Arthur's mother and Uther's wife: she is killed by Vortigern in the beginning of the film.
- Àstrid Bergès-Frisbey as The Mage (Guenivere), a woman working for Merlin who supports Arthur and the resistance.
- Djimon Hounsou as Sir Bedivere, the leader of the resistance and a former knight of Uther.
- Aidan Gillen as Sir William "Goosefat Bill" Wilson, a skilled archer, Bedivere's friend, former knight of Uther and member of the resistance.
- Kingsley Ben-Adir as Sir Tristan "Wet Stick", Arthur and Backlack's childhood friend who is later turned into a knight by Bedivere.
- Craig McGinlay as Sir Percival, a member of the resistance who is later turned into a knight by Bedivere.
- Tom Wu as Sir George, Arthur's mentor and a skilled fighter who helps the resistance and is later turned into a knight by Bedivere.
- Neil Maskell as Backlack, Arthur and Tristan's childhood friend and Blue's father, who helps the resistance.
- Bleu Landau as Blue, Backlack's son.
- Annabelle Wallis as Maggie, Vortigern's maid who helps the resistance.
- Jude Law as Vortigern, Uther's brother, Elsa's husband, Catia's father, Arthur's uncle and the tyrannical ruthless king of Britain.
- Mikael Persbrandt as Greybeard, a viking who has deals with Vortigern.
- Freddie Fox as Rubio, a member of the resistance who later betrays them under torture and helps Vortigern.
Kamil Lemieszewski, Jacqui Ainsley, and Rob Knighton portrays Merlin, the Lady of the Lake, and Mordred; three important characters from the Arthurian Mythology. Katie McGrath & Millie Brady portray Vortigern's wife Elsa & daughter Catia. Lorraine Bruce, Eline Powell and Hermione Corfield appears as the 3 Syrens. Michael McElhatton portrays Jack's Eye, Arthur's scout on the kingdom. Nicola Wren portrays Lucy, the prostitute who raises Arthur. David Beckham appears in a cameo.
King Arthur Movie Series (2017-2022)
In January 2014, Warner Bros set Guy Ritchie to direct a new multi-film version of the King Arthur legend. The first film Knights of the Roundtable: King Arthur was the intended first installment of a planned six film series. The titled of the first film was changed to King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017) in July 2016.