First Featurette for Steve McQueen’s 12 YEARS A SLAVE Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, and Brad Pitt

     September 3, 2013

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Steve McQueen‘s 12 Years a Slave received massive acclaimed when it premiered at the Telluride Film Festival, and now the first featurette for the film has been released.  The true story is based on Solomon Northup’s autobiography of the same name, and stars Chiwetel Ejiofor (Children of Men) as Northup, an educated and married black man living in New York in 1841.  Northup was approached by two men about a job offer in Washington D.C., but when he showed up he was kidnapped and forced into slavery for over a decade.  The featurette contains plenty of new footage, and listened to the interviews, it looks like they’ve stayed pretty close to the source material.  I read the book earlier this year, and found it to be revelatory and emotional, and I couldn’t understand why it’s not on middle school reading lists alongside Uncle Tom’s Cabin.  It’s a powerful story, and it looks like it will be a powerful movie.

Hit the jump to watch the featurette.  The film also stars Michael Fassbender, Benedict CumberbatchPaul GiamattiQuvenzhane WallisSarah PaulsonPaul DanoScoot McNairyGarrett DillahuntAlfre WoodardDwight Henry, Michael K. Williams, and Brad Pitt12 Years a Slave will play at the Toronto International Film Festival before opening on October 18th.

Via Yahoo! Movies.

Here’s the official synopsis for 12 Years a Slave:

12 YEARS A SLAVE is based on an incredible true story of one man’s fight for survival and freedom. In the pre-Civil War United States, Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery. Facing cruelty (personified by a malevolent slave owner, portrayed by Michael Fassbender) as well as unexpected kindnesses, Solomon struggles not only to stay alive, but to retain his dignity. In the twelfth year of his unforgettable odyssey, Solomon’s chance meeting with a Canadian abolitionist (Brad Pitt) forever alters his life.

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