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Director:  Ciro Guerra

Writer:  JM Coetzee (Novel)

Producer: Michael Fitzgerald and Olga Segura with AMBI Group’s Andrea Iervolino and Monika Bacardi

Cinematographer:  Chris Menges 

Role:  Officer Mandel

Costars:  Mark Rylance (Magistrate),  Johnny Depp (Colonel Joll), Gana Bayarsaikhan (Barbarian Girl), Harry Melling (??), Hami Belal (Joll’s #1 Man)

Production Co:  Ithaca Pictures, Infinitum Nihil (Johnny Depp), TaTaTu (Andrea Iervolino)

Sales Rep:  AMBI Distribution Worldwide; Paradigm Talent Agency

World Premiere: Venice Film Festival 2019 (In Competition)

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International Release Dates and Film Festivals


  • Australia – online + DVD Date TBC
  • Germany (Warten auf die Barbaren) – TBC
  • Japan – TBC
  • Mexico – TBC
  • Poland (Czekając na barbarzyńców) – TBC



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  • Gallery (Promotional Stills, Set Photos + Theatrical Posters)

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External Articles


  • Screen Daily Interview with Ciro Guerra (4 July 2017):  Guerra confirmed that his adaptation of J.M Coetzee’s Waiting For The Barbarians starring Mark Rylance, which was first reported in 2016, is still going ahead.  He said of the film: “That project is still moving forward. Hopefully it will be the first time I work in the English language. I’m open to that because of the possibility of working with great talent and an international scale but for me the most important thing is the source Material.  “Coetzee’s Waiting For The Barbarians is one of the great novels of the 20th century and there’s been a plan to make a film of it for a long time. It’s a challenge and a privilege to able to bring it to the big screen. It’s planned to shoot in 2018 and should be released in 2019.”
  • VARIETY confirms AMBI Media Group will fully fund film – slated to film fall/autumn 2018 in Europe and North Africa.


  • Optioned:  Originally 13 October 2016 and updated on 5 June 2017 via IMDbPro
  • Pre-Production as at 22 June 2018 (via IMDbPro) (Filming Morocco (Outer Posts) and Italy)
  • Filming:  29 October 2018 (Morocco) (via IMDbPro)
  • Production Wrapped:  14 December 2018
  • Post Production – 2 January 2019 (via IMDbPro)
  • Complete: 25 July 2019


  • From IMDbPro:  A British magistrate working in a small colonial town begins to question his loyalty to the Empire.
  • Novel Synopsis:  For decades the Magistrate has run the affairs of a tiny frontier settlement, ignoring the impending war between the barbarians and the Empire, whose servant he is. But when the interrogation experts arrive, he is jolted into sympathy with the victims and into a quixotic act of rebellion which lands him in prison, branded as an enemy of the state. Waiting for the Barbarians is an allegory of oppressor and oppressed. Not just a man living through a crisis of conscience in an obscure place in remote times, the Magistrate is an analogue of all men living in complicity with regimes that ignore justice and decency.
  • From Tracking Board:  The story centers on the crisis of the conscience of the magistrate—a loyal servant of the Empire working in a tiny frontier town, doing his best to ignore an inevitable war with the “barbarians.” After he witnesses the cruel and unjust treatment of prisoners of war, he reconsiders his role in the regime and carries out a quixotic act of rebellion. Rylance will place the magistrate.
  • Officer Warrant Mandel – LitCharts:  A warrant officer for the Empire, Mandel is sent to replace the magistrate’s position after the magistrate has been charged with treason (consorting with the barbarians). The magistrate describes Mandel as highly affected and self-conscious, and as putting great effort into expressing his authority in order to mask his more boyish and delicate sensibilities. Believing Mandel to hail from people of low social class, the magistrate thinks he’s adopted such heady airs in order to cover up any traces of his less-than-regal upbringing. Mandel presides over the magistrate’s imprisonment while Colonel Joll is at the front, and eventually releases him, finding the cost of imprisoning the magistrate to be no longer a justifiable expenditure.

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Rob’s Promo Schedule
  • Rob will attend DC Fandome (Virtual Event) on 22 August 2020 along with Matt Reeves
  • Rob’s Film Schedule
    The Batman Role: Bruce Wayne | Batman
    Director: Matt Reeves
    Release Date: 1 October 2021. Filming commenced 27 Jan 2020 | Filming suspended 14 March 2020 due to COVID-19. Production rumoured to recommence September 2020. Stay tuned for DCFanDome with exclusive content - 22 August 2020

    Tenet Role: TBA
    Director: Christopher Nolan
    Release Date: 26 August 2020 - check out our film page for all confirmed release dates by clicking on "News" below

    Waiting for the Barbarians Role: Warrant Officer Mandel
    Director: Ciro Guerra
    Release Date: World Premiere Venice FF 6 Sept 2019 | Opening film Cartagena FF 11 March 2020. Releasing digitally in US on 7 August 2020

    The Devil All the Time Role: Preston Teagardin
    Director: Antonio Campos
    Release Date: 16 September 2020.

    The Stars at Noon Role: TBA
    Director: Claire Denis
    Release Date: 2021 - Pre-Production: 18 February 2020 (Rumoured to be filming September 2020 in South America).

    The Lighthouse Role: Ephraim Winslow
    Director: Robert Eggers
    Release Date: Screening at TIFF Sept 2019 | US 18 Oct 2019 - DVD releases at Film Page - click News below

    The King Role: The Dauphin of France
    Director: David Michôd
    Release Date: World Premiere (Out of Competition) Venice Film Festival 2019 2 Sept 2019 | Now on Netflix.

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