Apple TV+ unveils the first Emancipation trailer. Since storming the stage and slapping Chris Rock at the 94th Academy Awards, many of Will Smith’s projects have either been postponed or shrouded in uncertainty, including Bad Boys 4, I Am Legend 2, and the Netflix film Fast and Loose. Another such project is Apple TV’s Emancipation. Inspired by an incredible true story, the historical action thriller stars Smith as a slave who, after nearly being whipped to death, escapes from a Louisiana plantation and must evade cold-blooded hunters as makes a harrowing journey North to join the Union Army.
Emancipation is the latest project from acclaimed director Antoine Fuqua. Other than Smith, the film’s supporting cast includes Ben Foster, Steven Ogg, Charmaine Bingwa, Gilbert Owuor, Mustafa Shakir, Grant Harvey, Ronnie Gene Blevins, and Jayson Warner Smith. Following a fierce bidding war, Apple ultimately won the rights to the buzzy project for over $130 million with Smith earning $35 million for his lead role. However, the film suffered some setbacks due to Smith’s slap and Georgia’s controversial Election Integrity Act which caused the production of Emancipation to pull out of the state and relocate to Louisiana. Now, after overcoming various obstacles, Emancipation is finally gearing up for its release.
Apple TV unveiled the Emancipation trailer and in addition to the first look, announced a December release date. The teaser trailer is narrated by Smith’s character, Peter, as he embarks on a perilous odyssey through the swamps of Louisiana in order to reunite with his family. Will Smith also shared the Emancipation trailer, saying “This was the hardest movie I’ve ever made. Blood, Sweat & Tears… LITERALLY!” Watch the trailer above.
Will Smith Garner Oscar Buzz For Emancipation?
During a night that was overshadowed by the now-notorious slap, Smith did take home the Academy Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role for King Richard. Now, Emancipation is highly-anticipated as his first film since the slap and his Oscar win. Based on the positive early reactions to the film calling it “powerful” and “gut-wrenching,” coupled with Apple’s decision to release the film in theaters on December 2 followed by December 9 on their streaming service, Emancipation is primed to be a formidable contender come this awards season.
It should be noted that, as punishment for his outburst, Smith is banned from attending the Oscars ceremony for the next 10 years. However, he is still eligible to be nominated and potentially win his second Academy Award. Though the Oscars slap seriously damaged Smith’s reputation, based on the early reactions to Emancipation and the trailer, the film could mark the beginning of a quick comeback for the formerly beloved star.
Next: Every Major Movie Role Will Smith Turned Down
Source: Apple TV