Black Sabbath manager: War Pigs song has sent Napoleon film trailer viral

The new trailer for the epic film Napoleon has been viewed 17 million times in just two weeks, thanks to Black Sabbath’s classic song War Pigs.

Napoleon is set to be released by Sony Pictures on Wednesday 22 November, with premium screens at Cineworld Broad Street and Odeon Luxe Broadway Plaza the very best places to watch it in Birmingham.

The film has been directed by legendary British filmmaker Sir Ridley Scott, who turns 86 on 30 November. Just three days later, Ozzy celebrates his 75th birthday on 3 December.

Jim Simpson, Black Sabbath’s original manager, says that fusing the pair’s talents together on the trailer seems to have been a masterstroke.

The offficial trailer on Sony Pictures’ YouTube channel which features Ozzy, released on 18 October, had 17,526,000 viewings at the time of uploading this story. You can watch it here:

Jim, himself now in his 80s and yet still operating Big Bear Music from Quayside Tower on Westside, said: “The Napoleon trailer is fabulous, showcasing the visual talents of Ridley Scott with the unmistakable sound of Ozzy Osbourne’s vocals and Black Sabbath’s timeless music.

Jim Simpson, Black Sabbath’s original manager.

“That 17 million have already watched this second trailer in just two weeks is proof of how the first two Sabbath albums I managed the releases of in 1970 will live forever.”

Joaquin Phoenix is Napoleon.

Shot in England and Malta, Napoleon (15, 157 mins) stars Oscar-winning actor Joaquin Phoenix (The Joker) as Napoleon, alongside Mission: Impossible star Vanessa Kirby as Josephine. A four-and-a-half hour director’s cut for Apple TV+ is expected to follow its cinema release.

Vanessa Kirby is Josephine.

Originally four working class guys from Aston, Black Sabbath’s band members were immortalised on Broad Street in June 2019 when guitarist Tony Iommi and bass player Geezer Butler unveiled the Black Sabbath Bench on the renamed Black Sabbath Bridge on Broad Street.

War Pigs is the opening track on the second album Paranoid, the band’s first No 1 that was released in September 1970, just six months after the original Black Sabbath LP.

Black Sabbath pictured in their early years by Jim Simpson outside his home in Edgbaston
Black Sabbath in their early years. © Jim Simpson

Jim, who also runs the longstanding Henry’s Blueshouse at The O Bar on the corner of Gas Street, added: “The ultimate proof of Sabbath’s enduring appeal is that they still have an army of fans all around the world across many different age groups and cultures.

“In the trailer for a film set more than 200 years ago, you can hear a crystal-clear Ozzy singing Geezer’s lyrics in the anti-war song War Pigs: ’Generals gathered in their masses, just like witches at black masses…’ and it sounds absolutely perfect.

Joaquin Phoenix as Napoleon Bonaparte.

“Like Beethoven, Mozart and all of the other great composers, you can imagine Sabbath’s made-in-Birmingham music will still be played and appreciated in 200 or more years’ in the future, too.”

Top pub quiz fact: Sir Ridley Scott is famed for his films Blade Runner, Alien, Thelma & Louise and Gladiator.

Napoleon pictures and video credit: Sony Pictures/Apple Original Films.


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