The official trailer won't come out until this Thursday, but movie and history lovers already can get their first peek at Steven Spielberg's upcoming presidential biopic, "Lincoln". Dreamworks released a 45-second teaser on YouTube yesterday.
Set to soft piano music, presumably from the John Williams score, the teaser shows brief flashes of U.S. Civil War battle action, each dissolving into a blackout. A subsequent nighttime shot shows an African American soldier walking away from Abraham Lincoln, the latter played by two-time Oscar-winner Daniel Day-Lewis.
In a voice-over, Lewis as Lincoln recites familiar lines from the Gettysburg Address: “...we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain – that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom – and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”
Filmed last fall in Petersburg, Virginia, Lincoln is based on Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, Doris Kearns Goodwin's 2005 biography of the much-revered American president. The movie covers the last few months of Lincoln's life, including such events as the battle over the U.S. Constitution's Thirteenth Amendment, the final days of the Civil War, the surrender of General Robert E. Lee and Lincoln's assassination at Ford's Theatre.
The film is Day-Lewis' first with Spielberg, and also his first since 2009's Nine. (Liam Neeson was originally slated to play Lincoln, but backed out.) It also stars Sally Field as Lincoln's wife, Tommy Lee Jones as abolitionist activist Thaddeus Stevens and Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Lincoln's oldest son. Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tony Kushner, who co-authored Spielberg's Munich, wrote the screenplay.
The full-length official trailer will make its exclusive debut online, at 7:00 p.m EST on Thursday, in a Google+ Hangout – which will be broadcast live on the ABC SuperSign in New York City's Times Square. According to Mashable, this will be the first time that a studio has launched a trailer in a Hangout community.
The Hangout will also host a live conversation with Spielberg and Gordon-Levitt. Anyone is free to tune in, but only an approved select few can take part in the discussion. Fans need to submit a YouTube video explaining their interest in the film, plus the questions they want to ask, to apply.
Lincoln is slated for limited release on November 9, with wide release the following week, Deadline Hollywood reported in July.