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The Duellists (1977)

PG | | Drama, War | December 1977 (UK)
A duel between two feuding Napoleonic officers eventually evolves into a decades-long series of duels, after each bout - for various reasons - ends unresolved.



(screenplay), (story "The Duel")

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Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Gen. Treillard
Dr. Jacquin
Maurice Colbourne ...
Gay Hamilton ...
Mme. de Lionne
Alan Webb ...


Set during the grand, sweeping Napoleonic age, an officer in the French army insults another officer and sets off a life-long enmity. The two officers, D'Hubert and Feraud, cross swords time and time again in an attempt to achieve justice and preserve their honor. Written by Greg Bole <bole@life.bio.sunysb.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Fencing is a science. Loving is a passion. Duelling is an obsession.


Drama | War


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

December 1977 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Duellists  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$900,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The Joseph Fouché character in this film (played by Albert Finney) was the First French Duc d'Otrante, this title is often known in English translations as the Duke of Otranto. The characters of Armand D'Hubert and Gabriel Feraud in this film and its source 'Joseph Conrad' short-story had names which were slightly altered by Conrad from the real life duelist Hussars who inspired the characters. They were called Pierre-Antoine comte Dupont de l'Étang and François Louis Fournier-Sarlovèze respectively. As such, in short, Dupont became D'Hubert and Fournier became Feraud. See more »


When d'Hubert and the doctor discuss the ways of avoiding duels with Feraud, the doctor brings two bottles of wine. He hands d'Hubert a corkscrew, but d'Hubert leans back in his chair and starts stuffing his pipe. Yet literally two seconds later the doctor also sits down and picks up a glass from the table, where an opened bottle is standing. d'Hubert has also suddenly got a full glass. See more »


[first lines]
Narrator: The duellist demands satisfaction. Honour, for him, is an appetite. This story is about an eccentric kind of hunger. It is a true story and begins in the year that Napoleon Bonaparte became ruler of France.
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Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: STRASBOURG 1800 See more »


Referenced in Creating a Myth... the Memories of 'Legend' (2002) See more »


Bist du bei mir
Music by Gottfried Heinrich Stölzel
(from "Notenbüchlein für Anna Magdalena Bach" No. 25. BWV 508)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Conrad + Scott = Great Film
16 December 1999 | by (Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA) – See all my reviews

With Conrad's story-telling ability and Scott's superb eye, how can you miss? You cannot! This is a superb film. It is my favorite Scott feature and resides in my top-five list. Now, if only Scott would adapt another of Conrad's great short-stories....

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D'Hubert + Foot Soldier in Russia? wogerdodger
What was the point of this movie? steatoda
How does this compare to Scott's other work? samuel-84
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Another view on the Duellists. fistjedi
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