25 years ago audiences were spellbound by one of the most unusual coming of age stories in film history: LEON (1994). The story of the relationship between the titular hitman (Jean Reno) and little Mathilda from next door launched the film career of Academy Award Winner Natalie Portman and established the French-born Luc Besson as one of Hollywood’s finest action directors.
For its 25th anniversary, Studiocanal celebrates Luc Besson’s masterpiece with a 4K restoration and exclusive new artwork from French artist Flore Maquin.
Having made his name with the likes of Subway, The Big Blue and Nikita, LEON was Besson’s first English language hit. He cast the unknown Natalie Portman (Black Swan, Star Wars Episode 1 ‘The Phantom Menace’) in her first film role alongside French star Jean Reno (Mission Impossible, Ronin) and introduced his distinct visual style to worldwide cinema audiences.
Also starring Gary Oldman (Darkest Hour, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) and Danny Aiello (Do The Right Thing, Moonstruck), LEON is widely regarded as a genre classic and one of the best action films to come out of the nineties.
The Director’s Cut from 2004 adds a whopping 23 minutes to the theatrical version, with most of the added scenes taking a closer look at the relationship between Leon and Mathilda at the heart of the movie.
Mathilda (Natalie Portman) is only 12 years old but is already familiar with the dark side of life: her abusive father stores drugs for corrupt police officers, and her mother neglects her. Léon (Jean Reno), who lives down the hall, tends to his houseplants and works as a hired hitman for mobster Tony (Danny Aiello). When her family is murdered by crooked DEA agent Stansfield (Gary Oldman), Mathilda joins forces with a reluctant Leon to learn his deadly trade and avenge her family’s deaths.
SPECIAL FEATURES – UHD & Blu-ray:
Leon – A Ten Year Retrospective
Jean Reno – The Road To Léon
Natalie Portman – Starting Young
Interviews with Jean Reno
Interviews with Eric Serra
SPECIAL FEATURES – DVD:
Interview with Jean Reno
Interview with Eric Serra