A Pulitzer Prize-winning play comes to life on the big screen this holiday season with Fences, starring Denzel Washington, who also steps behind the camera to direct his third feature film. Two months after the first trailer debuted, Paramount has released the second trailer with new footage, which shows that Denzel Washington’s character Troy Maxson wants to steer his son away from his former life as a ball player. The actor is actually reprising his role from the 2010 Broadway revival of this stage play, alongside Viola Davis.
The original stage play by August Wilson was the sixth in his 10-part series of plays known as The Pittsburgh Cycle. The play made its Broadway debut in 1987, with James Earl Jones starring as Troy Maxson, an African-American father who struggles with race relations in the United States while trying to raise his family in the 1950s and coming to terms with the events of his life.
The play also starred Mary Alice starring as his wife Rose and Courtney B. Vance as their son Cory. The play won the Tony Award for Best Play, with James Earl Jones and Mary Alice also winning Tony’s, and Courtney B. Vance earning a Tony nomination, with Fences also winning the Pulitzer Award that year as well.
The 2010 revival earned 10 Tony nominations altogether, which included acting nominations for both Denzel Washington and Viola Davis and Best Revival. Playwright August Wilson wrote the screenplay for this film adaptation, which started production in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in late April, and is set for release on Christmas Day. Fences from Paramount Pictures is currently the only movie set to open in wide release on December 25, but it falls in the midst of a competitive holiday season. It may also be an early awards season contender as well, but we’ll have to wait until closer to the end of the year for the Oscar race to truly take shape.
Just nine days before Christmas, Disney and LucasFilm will unleash the first Star Wars spin-off Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, which will also go up against Warner Bros.’ Collateral Beauty starring Will Smith, Helen Mirren and many more. On December 21, 20th Century Fox will release the video game adaptation Assassin’s Creed, starring Michael Fassbender, going up against Sony’s sci-fi thriller Passengers, starring Jennifer Lawrence as Chris Pratt, and Universal’s animated comedy Sing. On December 23, 20th Century Fox will release the comedy Why Him?, starring James Franco and Bryan Cranston. Those are just the films opening in wide release, with a slew of others such as Focus’ A Monster Calls, director Martin Scorsese’s Silence, Mark Wahlberg’s Patriot’s Day, director Jim Jarmusch’s Paterson, director/star Ben Affleck’s Live By Night and the ensemble Hidden Figures also opening in limited release.
Fences is directed by Denzel Washington from a screenplay by August Wilson, adapted from Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play. The supporting cast also includes Jovan Adepo, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Russell Hornsby, Mykelti Williamson and Saniyya Sydney. The film is produced by Scott Rudin, Denzel Washington and Todd Black. Take a look at the second trailer below for Fences, as we get closer to the December 25 release date.