‘The Power of the Dog’: Netflix December 2021 Release Set & What You Need to Know

Jacob Robinson What's on Netflix Avatar

benedict cumberbatch netflix movie the power of the dog

The Power of the Dog – Copyright. Netflix

In his first on-screen role in a Netflix Original, Benedict Cumberbatch will star in the screenplay adaptation of The Power of the Dog. Filming concluded in the Summer of 2020, and more cast members were announced. The feature is now scheduled to debut at the New York Film Festival in October 2021, and will late arrive on Netflix in December 2021.

The Power of the Dog is an upcoming Netflix Original drama based on the screenplay written by director Jane Campion. Campion’s screenplay is an adaptation of the 1967 novel of the same name by novelist Thomas Savage.

Behind the production of the Original is BBC Films, Bright Star, and See-Saw Films.

jane campion netflix

Jane Campion – Picture: Getty Images

When is the Netflix release date for The Power of the Dog?

Filming came to an end on the project in July 2020, and while it’s been a long wait we finally have our theatrical and Netflix release dates for The Power of the Dog.

As reported by Variety, The Power of the Dog will have its premiere at the New York Film Festival on October 1st, 2021. We’ve recently had confirmation that The Power of the Dog will arrive on Netflix on Wednesday, December 1st, 2021.

The movie will also get a theatrical release in select theaters. It opens in theaters in Australia and New Zealand on November 11th while it’ll open in theaters elsewhere on November 17th.

Will The Power of the Dog be available to stream in my region?

The only region we’re questioning the release of is the United Kingdom.

With BBC Films listed as part of the production, there’s every chance that The Power of the Dog won’t be licensed in the UK. It’s more than likely that the film could be broadcast on BBC One, and then available to stream on BBC iPlayer before eventually making its way to Netflix.

This is similar to how other Netflix and BBC co-productions work like Dracula and Wanderlust.

As for the rest of the world, The Power of the Dog should release in your Netflix region.

vanity fair the power of the dog

Vanity Fair Exclusive Photo – Picture: KIRSTY GRIFFIN/NETFLIX

What is the plot of The Power of the Dog?

The synopsis for The Power of the Dog has been provided by Netflix:

“A pair of brothers who own a large ranch in Montana are pitted against each other when one of them gets married.”

The story is based on the plot of the novel of the same name by author Thomas Savage, and could certainly be one of the darker dramas in the Original lineup. Elements of the story contain bullying, misogyny, and homosexuality in 1920s Montana.

power of the dog book cover netflix

The Power of the Dog Novel Cover With Netflix Label

Who is in the cast for Netflix’s The Power of the Dog?

cast grid for the power of the dog netflix

Cast grid for The Power of the Dog on Netflix

Once filming began we learned the full list of cast members set to feature in The Power of the Dog:

Role Cast Member Where Have I Seen/Heard Them Before?
Phil Burbank Benedict Cumberbatch The Imitation Game | Doctor Strange | Star Trek into Darkness
Rose Kirsten Dunst Spider-Man | Melancholia | Interview with the Vampire
George Burbank Jesse Plemons The Irishman | Breaking Bad | Game Night
Lola Thomasin McKenzie Leave No Trace | Jojo Rabbit | The King
Peter Kodi Smit-McPhee Let Me In | Slow West | X-Men: Apocalypse
Governer Edward Keith Carradine Nashville | Cowboys & Aliens | Deadwood
Edward Adam Beach Flags of Our Fathers | Windtakers | Suicide Squad
Bill Karl Willetts Slow West | Evil Dead | Being Eve
Libby Tatum Warren-Ngata Toke | Ahikaroa
TBA Frances Conroy Joker | Six Feet Under | Shelter
TBA Peter Carroll Sleeping Beauty | Crazy Rich Asians | Happy Feet

Prior to the casting of Kirsten Dunst, actress Elisabeth Moss was cast as Rose but due to scheduling conflicts, she had to back out of the project. Moss is most well known for her role as June Osborne, the protagonist in The Handmaid’s Tale. 

Another replacement was Paul Dano who had previously been cast as George Burbank. Despite his best efforts, his scheduling conflicts required him to step down from The Power of the Dog and was replaced by Jesse Plemons.

The Power of the Dog will be the first on-screen leading role in a Netflix Original for actor Benedict Cumberbatch. He has previously starred in a Netflix Original when he lent his voice to the production of Mowgli by portraying Shere Khan the tiger.

When did filming begin for The Power of the Dog?

Principal photography began on January 10th, 2020 but due to the global pandemic production was delayed for a few months. Filming resumed on June 22nd, eventually concluding on the 15th of July.

All of the filming took place in Newzealand in the southern region of Otago, in the city of Dunedin.

The movie changed its status from post-production to completed on July 26th, 2021 according to IMDb.

For more on the movie, we’d strongly recommend giving the VanityFair deep dive a read which goes into depth with Jane Campion on the new movie.

Are you looking forward to the release of The Power of the Dog? Let us know in the comments below!

Written by

Jacob joined What's on Netflix in 2018 as a fulltime writer having worked in numerous other industries until that point. Jacob covers all things Netflix whether that's TV or movies but specializes in covering new anime and K-dramas. Resides in Norwich in the United Kingdom.

 Poster Rating: R
Language: English
Genre: Drama, Romance, Western
Director: Jane Campion
Cast: Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst, Jesse Plemons
Added to Netflix: December 1st, 2021

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