The young D'Artagnan arrives in Paris with dreams of becoming a king's musketeer. He meets and quarrels with three men, Athos, Porthos, and Aramis, each of whom challenges him to a duel. D'Artagnan finds out they are musketeers and is invited to join them in their efforts to oppose Cardinal Richelieu, who wishes to increase his already considerable power over the king. D'Artagnan must also juggle affairs with the charming Constance Bonancieux and the passionate Lady De Winter, a secret agent for the cardinal.
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The Three Musketeers (also known as The Three Musketeers (The Queen's Diamonds)) is a 1973 swashbuckler film based on the 1844 novel by Alexandre Dumas. It is directed by Richard Lester from a screenplay by George MacDonald Fraser, and produced by Ilya Salkind. It stars Michael York, Oliver Reed, Frank Finlay, and Richard Chamberlain as the titular musketeers, with Raquel Welch, Geraldine Chaplin, Jean-Pierre Cassel, Charlton Heston, Faye Dunaway, Christopher Lee, Simon Ward, Georges Wilson and Spike Milligan.
The film adheres closely to the novel, and also injects a fair amount of humor. It was originally proposed in the 1960s as a vehicle for The Beatles, whom Lester had directed in A Hard Day's Night and Help!. It was shot by David Watkin, with an eye for period detail, in Madrid and Segovia, Spain. The fight scenes were choreographed by master swordsman William Hobbs. The musical score was composed by Michel Legrand.
The Three Musketeers premiered in France on December 11, 1973. It was both a critical and commercial success and was nominated for several awards, including five BAFTAs. Raquel Welch won a Golden Globe for her performance. A sequel shot back-to-back with its predecessor, The Four Musketeers, was released the following year.