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Scenes From A Marriage - What We Know So Far

In the early 1970s, revered auteur Ingmar Bergman shook up the television landscape for good when "Scenes from a Marriage," the six-part miniseries he wrote and directed, was released on Swedish TV. Starring Erland Josephson and frequent Bergman muse Liv Ullmann, the Swedish-language miniseries focused on Johan and Marianne, a couple whose marriage turns rocky as the veneer of their perfect union begins to crack. The once-comfortable couple faces very relatable obstacles as they separate and eventually divorce. Thanks to Bergman's naturalistic writing and filming style — two of the miniseries' biggest assets to its success as a story — audiences get to sit with the slow and steady breakdown of the titular marriage over the course of six episodes. All six episodes from "Scenes from a Marriage" were eventually condensed together into a single feature-length film (via Criterion) and met with critical praise, as evidenced by Roger Ebert's four-star review following its 1974 release.

Soon, HBO will release an English-language adaptation of "Scenes from a Marriage," which aims to reach the prestige TV heights achieved by its predecessor. Announced in July 2020 and teased in a stunning official trailer released in mid-August (via Deadline), HBO's "Scenes from a Marriage" will bring to life a new couple's steadily declining marriage as they face more contemporary obstacles. The new miniseries is directed and co-written by Hagai Levi, whose previous prestige TV credits include "In Treatment" and "The Affair."

Here's what we know so far about "Scenes from a Marriage," including the HBO release date, the star-studded cast, and the detailed plot synopsis.

What is the release date of Scenes from a Marriage on HBO?

HBO's "Scenes from a Marriage" will be released on Sunday, September 12. The official release date was announced at the end of the official trailer for the limited series. Additional information about the premiere was shared through an official HBO press release. Per the press release, "Scenes from a Marriage" will air from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET/PT. New episodes of "Scenes from a Marriage" will be released weekly, with the finale set to air on October 10. Additionally, new episodes will be available to stream on HBO Max after they debut on HBO.

HBO's press release on the official trailer and release date for the upcoming limited series also includes information about each of the five episodes, thus revealing the small updates which have been made for this English-language adaptation of Bergman's 1973 work. While the original "Scenes from a Marriage" ran for six episodes, the adaptation will consist of five episodes. A majority of the episode titles from the 1973 miniseries (check out IMDb for more on those titles) will also be shared by the HBO limited series. The one exception here is Episode 2's title, "Poli," which appears to be an update on "Paula," the title of Episode 3 in Bergman's version. The title update is unclear, but it could turn out to be a person's name, like the original episode title.

Who is in the Scenes from a Marriage HBO cast?

The cast that has assembled for "Scenes from a Marriage" is yet another incredible lineup assembled for an HBO prestige production. At the heart of the limited series' cast is Jessica Chastain and Oscar Isaac, who reunite seven years after starring together in 2014's "A Most Violent Year." Isaac's casting was announced in July 2020 by Deadline. At the time, the "Dune" actor was set to star in the HBO adaptation opposite Michelle Williams. Williams exited the project a few months later, allowing Chastain to board the project and re-team with Isaac. Chastain and Isaac will play Mira and Jonathan, a couple working through a variety of deep-rooted marital issues over the course of five episodes. The actors take over the central roles originally played by venerated Swedish stars Liv Ullmann and Erland Josephson in Bergman's 1973 miniseries.

In addition to Chastain and Isaac, HBO's "Scenes from a Marriage" cast includes Nicole Beharie ("Sleepy Hollow"), Corey Stoll ("The Many Saints of Newark"), Sunita Mani ("G.L.O.W."), Tovah Feldshuh ("Lady in the Water"), Maury Ginsberg ("Manifest"), and Susan Pourfar ("Scandal").

What is the plot of HBO's Scenes from a Marriage?

Thanks to HBO's press release on the "Scenes from a Marriage" official trailer and release date, we now know the extended plot synopsis of the upcoming limited series. Much like Bergman's 1973 miniseries (and later, the 1974 feature film crafted from the miniseries), "Scenes from a Marriage" will, thematically, be an exploration of "love, hatred, desire, monogamy, marriage, and divorce through the lens of a contemporary American couple."

HBO goes into deeper detail about the series, continuing with, "Mira (Chastain) is a confident, ambitious tech executive left unfulfilled by her marriage, and Jonathan (Isaac) is a cerebral and accommodating philosophy professor desperate to keep their relationship intact. Throughout, 'Scenes from a Marriage' mines the full complexity of Jonathan and Mira as individuals who ultimately know their marriage isn't being torn apart by any one event or flaw, resulting in a radically honest series that allows the audience to eavesdrop on private conversations between two people torn between feelings of hate and love."

The official trailer (via YouTube) gives us a preview of just how gut-wrenching the marriage-shattering events of "Scenes from a Marriage" will be. While no spoilers are revealed about what leads to the breakdown of Mira and Jonathan's marriage, aside from Mira talking ominously about leaving, it's clear that this series will be an emotional watch. Grab your tissues, folks, because this HBO prestige miniseries is going to be fall's biggest must-see show.