Trailer for ‘Chappaquiddick’ highlights Jason Clarke and Bruce Dern

Last week, somewhat lost in the shuffle, a promising Trailer dropped for Chappaquiddick, a look at one of the defining moments in the life of the late politician Ted Kennedy. Initially scheduled for a late 2017 release, it opted to avoid the glut of titles and hold back for next year, which could prove a wise decision. This politically tinged historical drama could appeal to both sides of the aisle, admittedly for different reasons. New distributor on the block Entertainment Studios is trying to make a name for themselves, so a strong push for this one could be in the cards. From the Trailer at least, it looks like something to watch out for. If you’ve ever been curious about this particular Kennedy and his scandal, you’re in luck.

For those curious what this one specifically is about, it’s a drama about the Chappaquiddick incident, as it would come to be known. IMDb describes it as such: “Ted Kennedy’s life and political career become derailed after he is involved in a fatal 1969 car accident that claims the life of a young campaign strategist, Mary Jo Kopechne.” Kennedy (Clarke) and his team, led by Joe Gargan (Ed Helms) race to contain the situation, all in the shadow of Ted’s powerful father Joe (Bruce Dern). Kopechne is played by Kate Mara, while other cast members include Clancy Brown, Jim Gaffigan, Olivia Thirlby, and more. John Curran directs, while the team of Taylor Allen and Andrew Logan penned the screenplay. Garth Stevenson provides the score, while the cinematography is by the perpetually underrated Maryse Alberti.

During its film festival run late this year, reviews were pretty solid overall. From the looks of the Trailer, it should be an acting showcase. Clearly, Clarke is in fine form, really inhabiting the conflicted Kennedy. As for Dern, watch out for him again next year as an under the radar Best Supporting Actor player. He appears haunting as the patriarch, capturing your attention, and remember…he still doesn’t have an Academy Award. Whether or not Oscar comes calling, political junkies and history buffs will definitely be curious about this one. I know it has me eager to see it, that’s for sure.

Opting to wait and come out in 2018, there’s a chance that Chappaquiddick could emerge as an Academy Award contender. It would have to be a targeted campaign, focused on Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor, but an across the board effort could be launched too. In that scenario, look at FYC ads in Best Picture, Best Director (for Curran), Best Actor (for Clarke), Best Supporting Actor (for Dern), Best Supporting Actress (for Mara and Thirlby), Best Original Screenplay (for Allen and Logan), Best Cinematography, and Best Film Editing, Logically though, it’s Clarke in Actor and Dern in Supporting Actor or bust. It’ll be an uphill battle, but this is a contender next year to keep in mind as the calendar turns.

You can see the Trailer for Chappaquiddick below, which should whet your appetite for this one. If you’ve been enjoying Clarke getting higher profile roles over the last few years, this lead part should be a godsend. If, like me, you relish any new character for Dern to play, his admittedly small looking part is one to wait for with baited breathe. The Trailer sets things up nicely, and next spring, specifically in April when it opens, there should be some level of audience for this one. Give a look now at the Trailer and sit tight for plenty more in the months to come…

Here now is the Chappaquiddick Trailer:

Stay tuned for more on Chappaquiddick between now and its April 6th release date next 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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