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Everything we know about the Ferrari biopic

Adam Driver hits the gas for Michael Mann’s drama-fuelled new movie

Adam Driver as Enzo Ferrari in Ferrari. (Sky Cinema)
Adam Driver as Enzo Ferrari in Ferrari. (Sky Cinema)

Heat director Michael Mann is gearing up for his latest movie release, this time taking aim at one of the most iconic faces in the world of competitive racing, Enzo Ferrari.

It’s a project that’s been on the filmmakers ‘to-do’ list for quite a while, having initially circled it back in 2000 after discussions to make the film with fellow director Sydney Pollack fell apart after his 2008 death.

Pollack's version would’ve seen Al Pacino take on its famed leading role and in the years since, Mann has had many other famous faces attached to his prized Ferrari biopic as it slowly made its way into production.

Cut to December 2023 and his take on Ferrari is finally in the can and will soon be speeding our way. Here’s everything we know about it so far, including its release date, plot, cast, trailers and more.


Ferrari release date

Ferrari will be released in UK cinemas on Tuesday, 26 December, and will later be available to watch on Sky and digital streamer NOW.

The film wrapped production in October 2022 and made its grand debut at the Venice International Film Festival in September 2023, a rather fitting launchpad for a film about an Italian icon.


Ferrari reviews

Adam Driver in Ferrari. (Sky Cinema)
Adam Driver in Ferrari. (Sky Cinema)

Following its official premiere at the Venice International Film Festival in late August, the first reviews of Mann's latest movie have started to arrive, with some calling the filmmaker's latest an "electrifying ride."

However, not everyone was completely sold. Total Film appeared to enjoy the movie and Driver's performance as the titular racing mogul but was quick to point out that something was lacking under the hood. Meanwhile, Deadline enjoyed elements but suggested that it stayed in a "low gear" throughout, while IndieWire praised Penélope Cruz's performance.

Read our full review round-up below.

Evening Standard: Michael Mann’s old banger stalls and splutters (3-min read)

The Telegraph: Adam Driver’s racing drama is an electrifying ride (3-min read)

Total Film: "Michael Mann's well-oiled biopic lacks a certain something under the hood" (3-min read)

Deadline: Michael Mann’s Intimate Portrait Of A Motoring Legend Stays In Low Gear (4-min read)

IndieWire: Penélope Cruz Steals the Wheel from Adam Driver’s Automaker in Michael Mann’s Racing Opera (6-min read)


Ferrari plot

(Eingeschränkte Rechte für bestimmte redaktionelle Kunden in Deutschland. Limited rights for specific editorial clients in Germany.) 18.02.1898 - 14.08.1988, Automobilkonstrukteur, I, - 1956  (Photo by ullstein bild via Getty Images)
Enzo Ferrari in 1956. (Getty Images)

Based on author Brock Yates' 1991 biography Enzo Ferrari: The Man and the Machine, Mann’s take on this Italian sports figure’s life promises to deliver heart-pounding racing action alongside a hefty dose of drama.

According to its official synopsis, Ferrari will be battling a moment of personal and professional crisis. With his company struggling with bankruptcy and a goal to be the very best in the world of motorsport, the man behind the brand is dealing with the death of a child and the dissolution of his marriage.

All of these elements come to a head as Ferrari prepares to tackle one of the most dangerous races of all, the infamous 1,000-mile Mille Miglia. Known for its danger to drivers and spectators alike, this race came to an end in 1957 after a fatal crash that killed numerous people, including Ferrari driver Alfonso De Portago and a number of young children, in the town of Guidizzolo.

Alfonso de Portago, 24 Hours of Le Mans, Le Mans, 13 June 1954. (Photo by Bernard Cahier/Getty Images)
Alfonso de Portago at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Le Mans, 13 June 1954. (Bernard Cahier/Getty Images)

Speaking of the way the film tackles these scenes, Mann recalled a visit to Guidizzolo, before shooting took place where he met a man who witnessed the crash. “He told me he and his brother heard the engines and ran toward the road," Mann told Variety.

"His brother was older and faster, so he was closer when the crash happened. He died, but his brother survived because he was slower.”


Ferrari cast

Ferrari stars Shailene Woodley and Penelope Cruz with director Michael Mann
Ferrari stars Shailene Woodley and Penelope Cruz with director Michael Mann. (Getty for Neon)

Marriage Story and House of Gucci actor Adam Driver takes on the movie’s lead role, playing company figurehead Enzo Ferrari. However, the role wasn’t always his. Over the years, Mann has seen a handful of would-be-Ferraris come and go, including Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman, as his movie patiently idled while waiting for a green light.

Penélope Cruz stars opposite Driver as his wife Laura, with Shailene Woodley appearing as Lina Lardi, the woman with whom Enzo has been having a long-term affair.

Enchanted star Patrick Dempsey — who frequently races in real life — heads behind the wheel on screen to play racecar driver Piero Taruffi, with Brit actor Jack O’Connell joining him as fellow racer Peter Collins.

Enemy actor Sarah Gadon plays the real-life Mexican screen star Linda Christian, and Gabriel Leone plays Spanish driver Alfonso de Portago, with Erik Haugen playing his American navigator and fellow driver, Edmund Nelson.


Ferrari trailer

Adam Driver in Ferrari. (Sky Cinema)
Adam Driver in Ferrari. (Sky Cinema)

Enzo Ferrari's personal and professional lives heat up during the most recent, full-length trailer for Mann's new racing biopic.

Featuring shots of racetrack chaos and personal relationship turmoil, Ferrari looks set to be a pressure-cooker drama that'll test its subject to his limits. Watch the film's full trailer below:

"If you get into one of my cars, you get into me," warns a stony-faced Driver in our first glimpse at his performance as the iconic racecar boss in Ferrari.

Personal dramas flare as engines roar throughout this minimalistic yet captivating first look at Mann's new movie. The stakes rise with every gear change as we watch Ferrari cars barrel through countryside roads and the picturesque streets of Rome, all while the man behind the action appears to be juggling his own driving forces that look to be pushing his life to its limits.

Watch Ferrari's first teaser trailer below:


Ferrari will be released in UK cinemas on 26 December