Paramount has released the first official trailer for Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, John Requa and Glen Ficarra‘s adaptation of Kim Barker‘s memoir about her time reporting news from Afghanistan and Pakistan in the aughts. The film stars Tina Fey as Barker, who goes to Afghanistan to, as she puts it at one point, “blow everything up” in her social, romantic, and professional life, and the trailer highlights the confusion, zaniness, and danger of the world Barker found herself in. While in the Middle East, she befriends a few people, including Tanya, a fellow reporter played by Margot Robbie, an army higher-up (Billy Bob Thornton), a photographer (Martin Freeman), and her handler, played by James White lead Christopher Abbott. You can check out the trailer for Whiskey Tango Foxtrot right below:
The film looks clever and funny in an amiable sort of way, though there’s already a potent sense that the film isn’t particularly interested in the roots of its hugely political premise. Rather, the film seems to be a character study of a talented yet reckless woman who is in need of a new perspective on life, which could be exactly the vehicle that Fey has been looking for and consistently not finding on the big screen. There’s also hope, fleeting though it is, that this will signal a course correction for Ficarra and Requa, who have yet to capitalize on the promise of their first directorial effort, I Love You Phillip Morris, or, for that matter, their funny, nuanced script for Richard Linklater‘s excellent Bad News Bears remake. Their last film, Focus, would easily count as one of the worst films of 2015, squandering the star power of both Will Smith and Robbie; in comparison, their intermittently charming, rarely funny Crazy, Stupid, Love looks like a borderline solid comedy.
There’s certainly more ambition at play in Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, which was written by Fey’s longtime collaborator Robert Carlock, a crucial part of the guffaw-laden godsends 30 Rock and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, but this whole deal could go soft awfully quick. We won’t know how exactly it will all pan out for a few more months, with the film debuting in theaters nationwide on March 4th, 2016, but here’s hoping that Fey, Ficarra, and Requa can find something personal and insightful to plumb in Whiskey Tango Foxtrot. You can find the official poster for the film below as well.