The first La La Land trailer has been released online for Whiplash filmmaker Damien Chazelle’s highly anticipated follow-up film, and it looks absolutely fantastic. The Los Angeles-set love story is a fully-fledged musical that revolves around the burgeoning love between a musician (Ryan Gosling) and a struggling actress (Emma Stone). This was an ambitious choice of material for the fresh-faced Chazelle after exploding onto the scene with the dark and slightly terrifying Whiplash, but boy does this gamble look to have paid off. The film is bathed in lush colors with a terrific throwback vibe to the era of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, albeit with a slight edge to the imagery that promises this is more than a simple homage film.
Gosling is a musician in real life, so singing is nothing new to the Oscar-nominated performer, and this teaser trailer makes great use of his voice as images from the film play out while Gosling whistles and sings a slow tune called “City of Stars” (which is available to purchase now). This is a wonderful teaser trailer as it does a perfect job of previewing what this film may be without flooding us with plot and character details. Admittedly I was already in once I knew it was Chazelle doing a full-on musical, but this trailer makes me even more excited to see what La La Land has up its sleeve.
Check out the first La La Land trailer below. The film also stars John Legend, Rosemarie DeWitt, Finn Wittrock, Callie Hernandez, Sonoya Mizuno, Jessica Rothe, Tom Everett Scott, and Josh Pence. La La Land will have its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival on August 31st—a serious pre-Oscar pitstop—and opens in NY and LY on December 2nd, in limited release on December 9th, and wide on December 16th.
Here’s the official synopsis for La La Land:
Written and directed by Academy Award® nominee Damien Chazelle, LA LA LAND tells the story of Mia [Emma Stone], an aspiring actress, and Sebastian [Ryan Gosling], a dedicated jazz musician, who are struggling to make ends meet in a city known for crushing hopes and breaking hearts. Set in modern day Los Angeles, this original musical about everyday life explores the joy and pain of pursuing your dreams.