Killers of the Flower Moon trailer makes it look like a shoo-in for the 2024 Oscars

Mollie looks at Ernest as they sit at a dining table in Killers of the Flower Moon
Killers of the Flower Moon launches in theaters on October 6. (Image credit: Apple TV Plus/Paramount Pictures)

Killers of the Flower Moon's first tension-fuelled trailer has been released – and, based on its footage, we'd be amazed if it's not a shoo-in for next year's Oscars ceremony.

The epic Western crime drama, which arrives in theaters in late 2023 (and on Apple TV Plus at an as-yet-announced date), is the latest big-screen offering from legendary director Martin Scorsese. Given the movie's suspense-riddled vibe, period setting, and all-star ensemble cast, too, it would be surprising if viewers expected this to be anything but a Scorsese-led flick.

Take a look at Killers of the Flower Moon's first teaser below:

Based on David Grann's best-selling novel of the same name, Killers of the Flower Moon tells the tale of the 1920s Oklahoma Murders – also known as the Reign of Terror – which saw numerous members of the wealthy Osage tribe killed in mysterious circumstances. The incident sparked a major FBI investigation, led by J. Edgar Hoover and Tom White, surrounding the possibility of racially-aggravated murders on oil-rich Osage Nation land.

With Scorsese on directing duties, you'd be correct in thinking that a ton of A-list actors are on board for his movie adaptation of Grann's award-winning book. Leonardo DiCaprio has teamed up with Scorsese for the fourth time in the former's career, with the pair working on major hits in The Departed, The Wolf of Wall Street, and Shutter Island. Robert De Niro has also joined forces again with Scorsese following The Irishman, one of the best Netflix movies ever made. DiCaprio and De Niro will play Ernest Burkhart and William Hale respectively.

Joining that duo on Killers of the Flower Moon's powerhouse cast are Jesse Plemons (Breaking Bad, Love & Death) as White, Lily Gladstone (Billions) as Mollie Burkhart, Brendan Fraser (The Whale) as W.S. Hamilton, Tantoo Cardinal (Wendell & Wild) as Lizzie Q, and John Lithgow (Interstellar, Shrek) asProsecutor Leaward, among many others.

Killers of the Flower Moon's screenplay has been penned by Scorsese and Eric Roth (Dune, Munich). The film is believed to have a runtime exceeding three hours, too, so you'll want to plan your toilet breaks accordingly. Regardless, you can expect Killers of the Flower Moon, which arrives in theaters on October 6, to join many other exciting films of 2023 in our new movies guide very soon.

An award-winning return to form?

Martin Scorsese talks to Lily Gladstone in a behind-the-scenes image during Killers of the Flower Moon's production

Killers of the Flower Moon could see Scorsese win his first Oscar for over a decade. (Image credit: Apple TV Plus/Paramount Pictures)

As iconic and beloved a director as Scorsese is – Marvel fans might not agree with that sentiment, based on his comments about the MCU – it seems surreal that it's been 12 years since he last won an Academy Award.

Yes, you read that right: Martin Scorsese hasn't won a single Oscar for over a decade. The acclaimed director's last triumph came in 2011, when Hugo netted him (and the movie's wider cast and crew) five gongs on the night.

Since then, Scorsese has endured his longest Academy Award drought. His last three films – The Wolf of Wall Street, Silence, and The Irishman – have been cumulatively nominated for 16 Oscars (in 2013, 2016, and 2019), but none of them bagged Scorsese another prize to add to his stuffed awards cabinet. In fact, Scorsese has only won one award at the industry's big three awards events – the Oscars, BAFTAS, and Golden Globes – in the last 12 years. For a director with 54 combined Oscar, BAFTA, and Golden Globe wins to his name (from 246 nominations, admittedly), that recent award-winning form hasn't been good enough.

So Killers of the Flower Moon potentially presents Scorsese with his best chance yet to end that near-barren streak. Of course, the competition will be as fierce as it's ever been when the 2024 awards season rolls around, so there's no guarantee that Killers of the Flower Moon will a) be nominated, and b) secure any awards. 

Still, Scorsese will privately hope that isn't the case. After all, he's working alongside Apple TV Plus – the streaming service that beat his Netflix film The Irishman to Best Picture at the Oscars in 2022 with CODA. By joining forces with the studio that bested him two years ago, then, surely Scorsese and Killers of the Flower Moon are a shoo-in for next year's ceremony? Only time will tell, but we'd expect him to win something.

For more Apple TV Plus-based coverage, read our guides on the best Apple TV Plus movies (which Killers of the Flower Moon should join later this year) and the best Apple TV Plus shows around.

Tom Power
Entertainment Reporter

As TechRadar's entertainment reporter, Tom covers all of the latest movies, TV shows, and streaming service news that you need to know about. You'll regularly find him writing about the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Star Wars, Netflix, Prime Video, Disney Plus, and many other topics of interest.

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