The trailer for new Spike Lee movie BlacKkKlansman has arrived. Focus Features has unveiled the first footage, which in addition to being directed by Lee is produced by Get Out director Jordan Peele. Much like Get Out, this undercover drama is making a very clear commentary on the African American experience, but it also has the added layer of being based on an insane true story. This first trailer for BlacKkKlansman is compelling, and is certain to stir up some conversation online.
There is a lot to unpack in this trailer. We see John David Washington, son of Denzel Washington who is best known for his work on HBO's Ballers, entering the otherwise white police force in Colorado Springs. He then decides to pose as a stereotypical white man in order to infiltrate the Ku Klux Klan, enlisting the help of Kylo Ren himself, Adam Driver, in order to do so. Of all people, Topher Grace of That 70's Show fame plays the leader of the Ku Klux Klan here, which certainly adds to the plentiful craziness present in this trailer. As the trailer is well aware, this story is made even more insane by the fact that this actually happened.
BlacKkKlansman takes place in the early 1970s, and centers on Ron Stallworth (John David Washington), who is the first African American detective to serve in the Colorado Springs Police Department. Determined to make a name for himself, he bravely sets out on a dangerous mission to infiltrate and expose the Ku Klux Klan. The young detective soon recruits Flip Zimmerman (Adam Driver), who seems to be less enthusiastic about the assignment. As Stallworth boasts, "With the right white man, we can do anything." Together, they team up to take down the extremist hate group as the organization aims to sanitize its violent rhetoric to appeal to the mainstream.
A project like this could run the risk of coming off as too serious, but it looks like Spike Lee and Jordan Peele have injected a good deal of comedy into the movie, based on the trailer. Still, this is also the kind of thing that feels like it's destined for controversy, but that doesn't particularly scare someone like Spike Lee and he feels like the right guy to be telling this sort of story. The movie is based on the book Black Klansman which was written by the real Ron Stallworth.
The book was adapted for the screen by Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, Kevin Willmott and Spike Lee. Laura Harrier (Spider-Man: Homecoming) and Paul Walter Hauser (I, Tonya) also star. BlaKkKlansman is set to arrive in theaters on August 10, which not only puts it out at the tail end of the summer movie season, but also could position it for some awards season love, depending on how it turns out. Be sure to check out the first trailer for BlacKkKlansman, courtesy of the Focus Features YouTube channel, for yourself below.