There were rumors that “If Beale Street Could Talk” would never be able to live up to the level of “Moonlight,” Barry Jenkins’ breakout film. Yet, audiences at the Toronto International Film Festival changed that narrative quickly. Not only does “If Beale Street” sound like a contender, it could be one of the sweetest films of the year. With expectations now through the roof, many are wondering what the film will bring to the table. Today, Annapurna released a new trailer for the film, one that puts much more emphasis on the plot than the original teaser.
The adaptation of the James Baldwin novel follows a young couple growing up in Harlem. When Fonny Hunt (Stephan James) is falsely accused of rape, he goes to jail. This leaves Tish (KiKi Layne) without her partner. Even more serious, she is pregnant with his child. The film depicts her struggle to exonerate him while he waits in jail.
The cast for “If Beale Street Could Talk” stretches much further than the ensemble from “Moonlight.” Regina King already gets a standout moment in the trailer. Many have predicted her as a potential Best Supporting Actress nominee play. We also get a look at Michael Beach as Tish’s father. The majority of the trailer continues to circle around James and Layne, who both look more than up to the task of carrying the film. Also of note, the reunion of most of the crew that helped “Moonlight” grab eight Oscar nominations. Chief among them are Joi McMillion and Nat Sanders returning as editors, James Laxton as the DP, and Nicholas Britell scoring the film. Expect this one to strike a chord with the Academy.