In 2005, a few years after his excellent “Gladiator”, director Ridley Scott decided to return to the world of peplums with “Kingdom of Heaven”. But by the way, do you know who is hiding under the mask of Baudouin IV?
Kingdom of Heaven : Ridley Scott’s return to the world of peplums
Ridley Scott has always loved peplums and swashbuckling movies. It is not for nothing that in 1977, the director began his career as a filmmaker with The Duelists, his very first feature film. Then, in 2000, he directs one of his greatest films: Gladiator. A monumental slap that depicts Ridley Scott’s talent for staging peplums. A genre to which he will return several times with notably Kingdom of Heaven (2005), Robin Hood(2010) and Exodus (2014).
In 2005, Ridley Scott staged Kingdom of Heaven. Led, in particular, by Orlando Bloom, Liam Neeson, Jeremy Irons and Eva Green, the feature film tells the extraordinary adventures of an ordinary man plunged into the madness of the crusades. Without being a critical failure, the work nevertheless made a rather timid score at the box office with only 218 million dollars in revenue for a budget of 130 million.
Who is hiding under the mask of Baudouin IV?
Thereby, Kingdom of Heaven tells the story of Balian, played by Orlando Bloom, who finds himself serving the mysterious King Baudouin IV of Jerusalem. The latter really existed. Born in 1161, crowned in 1174, and died in 1185, he was nicknamed the leper kingfor he was stricken with the disease of leprosy and thus hid his face under a silver mask.
Ridley Scott has decided to take up this story and present a king whose face the viewer will never see. But what is funny is that the director chose an international star to camp Baudouin IVwithout the public knowing it.
Indeed, few people are aware at the time of the release of the film, but it is Edward Norton who hides under the mask of Baudouin IV. To keep the surprise intact, Edward Norton insisted with Ridley Scott and the 20th Century Fox, to keep his name secret. So much so that he persisted so that his name is not credited in the credits.
Thus, when the release of Kingdom of Heaven, nobody knew that it was Edward Norton who played Baudouin IV. His identity was revealed a few months later when the film was released on video in long version.