Ben Affleck’s “Live by Night” gets a real stylish Trailer

Live By Night Ben Affleck
Late last week, we got our first true glimpse of Ben Affleck’s latest directorial outing. As a fan of all three films Affleck has made as a director, Live by Night had already been on my radar, but this was a nice reminder that it’s not far out now. Scheduled for a January release date, rumors have gone back and forth about whether or not Warner Bothers is going to give it an Oscar qualifying run in December. Regardless, I’m greatly looking forward to it and this first Trailer did nothing to change that. You’ll obviously get a look at it at the end of this piece, but first…let’s discuss a bit!

For those wondering, the film is an adaptation of the Dennis Lehane novel of the same name, representing the second time that Affleck has gone to Lehane for inspiration. It is set during the era of Prohibition and follows Joe Coughlin (Affleck), the son of a cop who begins rising through the ranks of organized crime. Things will take place in Miami, Cuba, and elsewhere, as this is a generational and large scale tale. It seems incredibly ambitious too, judging from what’s been seen so far, with Affleck writing, directing, and starring. He’s got an interesting cast here too, including Elle Fanning, Brendan Gleeson, Zoe Saldana, Sienna Miller, Scott Eastwood, Chris Messina, Chris Cooper, Titus Welliver, Anthony Michael Hall, Max Casella, and more. Big time DP Robert Richardson is the cinematographer here, while William Goldenberg edits and Harry Gregson-Williams handles the score. All the ingredients are here for something pretty special.

From the looks of it, this gangster tale could be something in the model of the classic tales of yore, just with Affleck’s distinctive spin. As a filmmaker, he has a knack for making old fashioned movies that still feel modern, so this is a definite compliment. It’s possible that this is just straight genre work, and if it doesn’t get an Oscar qualifying run this year, that might be the case, but if not, the flick has definite awards potential. Frankly, it’s subject matter that the Academy has flocked to time and time again, so it would be foolish to count this one out. Even if it doesn’t hit late in 2016, it could be a 2017 contender instead.

Awards wise, it’s a crapshoot for Live by Night right now, due to its up in the air release, but the across the board potential is easy to see. Obviously, things start with Best Picture, Best Director (for Affleck), Best Actor (for Affleck too), Best Supporting Actor (for Eastwood, Gleeson, and/or Messina), Best Supporting Actress (for Fanning, Miller, and/or Saldana), Best Adapted Screenplay (for Affleck as well), Best Production Design, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing, and Best Original Score. Right now, there’s no qualifying run for this year planned, so consider these 2017 possibilities, but that could certainly change. We shall see.

You can see the Trailer below, obviously, but I really do think this is something to look out for. Whether it’s just a popcorn crime tale or an Academy friendly awards vehicle, Affleck is a hell of a filmmaker, so it’s high up on my to see list. Live by Night will either reveal itself fully in late December or January, so now it’s more or less just a waiting game. Sit tight for any information we have on it, as I’ll be keeping my ear to ground about a qualifying run. Anything is possible, as we all know, so don’t sleep on it…

Here now is the first Trailer for Live by Night:

Stay tuned for more on Live by Night, including whether or not it gets an Oscar qualifying run this year!

About Joey Magidson

A graduate of Stony Brook University (where he studied Cinema and Cultural Studies), resides in Brooklyn, New York. He contributes to several other film-related websites and is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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