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Trailer for “BlacKkKlansman” suggests Spike Lee is back in the Oscar race

Over at the Cannes Film Festival yesterday, Spike Lee’s hotly anticipated new movie BlacKkKlansman had its World Premiere. At the same time, a Trailer dropped for the flick, showing just what was blowing people away in France. Initially thought to be a drama or a thriller, this based on a true story tale actually seems more like a black comedy, with buddy cop trappings as well. This genre and tonal shift certainly gives the film a whole new look. Plus, the Trailer does look fantastic. Combine that with the raves so far at Cannes and this is something to really be excited for. You’ll be able to see the Trailer at the end of this article, but first…let us get into just what Lee has in store for us this summer.

The movie is a crime comedy of sorts, based on a true story. IMDb describes it as “Ron Stallworth, an African-American police officer from Colorado, successfully managed to infiltrate the local Ku Klux Klan and became the head of the local chapter.” Ron (John David Washington) is the first African-American officer to join the newly integrated police force. Interested in undercover work, he partners with Jewish officer Flip Zimmerman (Adam Driver) to infiltrate the Klan. Ron works the phone, tricking Klansmen verbally, while Flip goes to the meetings and puts a face to the name/voice. Of course, this is all done with a mix of anger and hilarity. Lee directs and co-writes with David Rabinowitz, Charlie Wachtel, and Kevin Willmott in adapting Stallworth’s book. The cast also includes Alec Baldwin, Harry Belafonte, Robert John Burke, Ryan Eggold, Topher Grace, Laura Harrier, Paul Walter Hauser, Corey Hawkins, Jasper Pääkkönen, and more. Chayse Irvin handles the cinematography, while the score comes from longtime Lee composer Terence Blanchard. Jason Blum and Jordan Peele produce.

From the looks of the Trailer, the film should be am absolute blast. Funny, tense, unique, and with a through line of righteous anger, this is perfect material for Lee. Moreover, it seems like he aced it. Pundits at Cannes were over the moon for it, giving the work a huge ten minute long standing ovation. Not only have they called it his best work in some time, it’s also apparently among his most commercial. That combination is a potential gold mine. Not only could it make a ton of money, it could become one of the fall’s big awards vehicles.

Oscar definitely could go for BlacKkKlansman if it’s as good as advertised. At the very least, Focus Features will be able to shoot for awards. An across the board campaign makes sense, which would lead to Best Picture, Best Director (for Lee), Best Actor (for Driver and Washington), Best Supporting Actor (for Driver and/or Grace), Best Supporting Actress (for Harrier), Best Adapted Screenplay (for Lee, Rabinowitz, Wachtel, and Willmott), Best Production Design, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing, Best Hairstyling & Makeup, and Best Original Score being campaigned in. It’s too early to know how that will go, but on Friday when I drop new predictions, this movie will be in a number of categories. Take that for what it’s worth.

The Trailer for BlacKkKlansman is up next, and it certainly gives you ample reason to circle August 10th on your calendar. The flick hits theaters then, and it could be one of Lee’s biggest successes ever. This film is a little less than three months away, and that’s delightful to know. We’ll see shortly if it takes home any awards at Cannes, but already it seems like the success of the festival. For now, take a look at the Trailer and sit tight for more on Lee’s latest. Something tells me we’ll be talking about it quite a bit throughout the rest of the year…

Here now is the Trailer for BlacKkKlansman:

Stay tuned for plenty more on BlacKkKlansman between now and its August release date!

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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