Barry Jenkins Debuts Stunning If Beale Street Could Talk Trailer on James Baldwin’s Birthday

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James Baldwin was born on this day in 1924, so naturally, Barry Jenkins and Annapurna Pictures debuted the first trailer for the film adaptation of the Baldwin’s 1874 novel, If Beale Street Could Talk. And what a beautiful trailer it is, though we expect nothing less from the director of the Oscar-winning film Moonlight.

Beale Street follows the love story of the sculptor Fonny (Stephan James) and Tish (Kiki Layne), whose relationship undergoes devastation after Fonny is falsely accused of rape and goes to jail while Tish, nineteen years old, is pregnant. The novel details their love story and efforts to correct the injustice Fonny is facing.

The story is, without question, a difficult one, but if anyone can tell Baldwin’s story with empathy, sensitivity, and artfulness, it is Jenkins. When the project was first announced, the director said, “James Baldwin is a man of and ahead of his time; his interrogations of the American consciousness have remained relevant to this day … To translate the power of Tish and Fonny’s love to the screen in Baldwin’s image is a dream I’ve long held dear. Working alongside the Baldwin Estate, I’m excited to finally make that dream come true.”

The cast also includes Regina King, Teyonah Parris, Diego Luna, Pedro Pascal, and Ed Skrein.

Jenkins shared the trailer on his Twitter account, writing that August 2nd “has always been a day to pay tribute.”

The film comes to theaters on November 30th, following a world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in September. Are you going to check out If Beale Street Could Talk?

(image: screencap)

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