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First Look: Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch & Chiwetel Ejiofor In ’12 Years A Slave’

First Look: Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch & Chiwetel Ejiofor In '12 Years A Slave'

A movie by U.K. helmer Steve McQueen is always cause for celebration, but this one sounds like it’s going to be his most brutal. And it’s not like “Hunger” or “Shame” were easy walks in the park either. Based in a true story,  McQueen’s latest, “12 Years A Slave,” is just what it sounds like, a harsh slave drama set in the South. In fact, someone on Twitter the other day says a friend saw it and described it as “Django Unchained” without the comedy. Sounds like a bundle of laughs, right? Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, the actor plays Solomon Northup, a free man tricked, captured and sold into slavery in the film based off of Northup’s autobiography. The rest of the cast is rather stellar too and features Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Paul Giamatti, Paul Dano, Sarah Paulson and Alfre Woodard.

USA Today has a first look from the movie including photos that include Dwight Henry of “Beasts of the Southern Wild.” Henry’s ‘Beasts’ co-star Quvenzhane Wallis is also in the film, but not pictured. We know that Fassbender plans a ruthless plantation owner, but USAToday also reveals that Benedict Cumberbatch plays Baptist preacher William Ford, Ejiofor’s first owner (and a benevolent one at that)Sarah Paulson plays Fassbender’s wife Mistress Epps and the film also includes actress Lupita Nyongo (pictured with Paulson), Scoot McNairy, Michael Kenneth Williams and Garret Dillahunt.

Pitt’s role is small, but as a producer, essential. “Without Brad, this film wouldn’t have been made. Fact,” McQueen said. “Just his presence sometimes could lift everyone’s mood. It’s like having a great ballplayer on a team. He doesn’t have to play a big role, but his presence can lift everyone’s game.”

“He goes through an extraordinary ordeal, a very painful, brutal experience, and found a kind of redemption on the other side of it,” McQueen told USA Today about Ejiofor’s character, and apparently Fassbender’s performance is fierce. “[It’s one] that no one’s ever seen before, and that’s saying something.” Probably not for the faint of heart, Fox Searchlight is releasing “12 Years A Slave” on December 27, 2013.

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Comments

DHHV

Incredibly reckless to sacrifice the safety of a group of people over an hyper exaggerated art piece loosely based on a glimpse in history. While these actors go home to Beverly Hills, normal white people go home and become targets of an increasingly violent hyper sensitive racist black youth that are killing whites at a growing rampant number. daily

Grace

Lena Foster aka GorillaHunter is allegedly an ex girlfriend of one of the main characters of the cast. He dated a AA woman that got her extremely angry because he probably refused her generous offer to be his doormat. She has a modus operandi:1. lie low 2. emerge with outrageous statements on several sites etc. He has another crazy that goes around impersonating young AA women when in actual fact she is an middle aged Avon lady from Michigan. Her personas include British, Canadian Puerto Rican. etc all done very badly. Especially galling is her impersonation of young AA: they are always arguing projecting and deflecting : one suspect that it is her personality. Please do not let these two haters derail any serious conversation about film. They have infested IMB purseblog forum and in part LSA. Please engage at your own peril. They are haters really. Both have posted on this topic in the comment section.

This is better submission of the prior comment.

Grace

Lena Foster aka GorillaHunter id allegedly an ex girlfriend of one of the main characters of the cast. He dated a AA woman that got her extremely angry because he probably refused her generous offer to be his doormat. She has a modus operandi:1. lie low 2. emerge with outrageous statements on several sites. She has another crazy that goes around impersonating young AA women when in actual fact she is an middle aged Avon lady from Michigan. Her personas include British, Canadian Puerto Rican. etc all done very badly. Especially galling is her impersonation of young AA: they are always arguing projecting and deflecting : one suspect that it is her personality. Please do not let these two haters derail any serious conversation about film. They have infested IMB purseblog forum and in part LSA. Please engage at your own peril. They are haters really.

n.fe

oh, lena. you sad, pathetic, racist moron.

Dede

PLEASE do not feed the Lena Foster troll. She's actually getting scarier.

mika291

Looks really great- and I agree with Steve- many kudos to Brad Pitt for consistently working to make sure that worthy stories get told that otherwise wouldn't.

AE

"Without Brad, this film wouldn't have been made. Fact," WTF is up with movie financiers, are they intent on boring us all to death, it seems anything vaguely interesting or challenging is deemed unfinanceable. Surely if anyone's responsible for the decline of cinema it's the censorious men with the money bags.

Simone

I can't wait to see this at TIFF. it's going to be a very difficult film to watch, but I also expect it to be brilliant.

Susie

McQueen's films are intense; this film, from the sound of it, will be uncompromising in its presentation of the day-to-day reality of slavery. I hope this leads to an oscar nomination for Fassbender for supporting actor. He is one of the best actors of his generation, and it is really shameful (pun intended, I suppose) that both he and McQueen have been overlooked.

A.J.

Can't wait to watch the film. McQueen always makes films that are made to be talked about and critiqued. He isn't a director that makes comedies with happy endings, so if someone has such objections about his films, should take into account that McQueen's background is in the fine arts.

A.J.

Can't wait to watch the film. McQueen always makes films that are made to be talked about and critiqued. He isn't a director that makes comedies with happy endings, so if someone has such objections about his films, should take into account that McQueen's background is in the fine arts.

Daniella

Please ignore this Lena Foster "person". She/he is a racist troll who goes around the internet and spreads her insane rhetoric on every post or article that has anything to do with Michael Fassbender. She/he is notorious on his IMDB message board for being obsessed with him, his choice in women and the race of those women. She/he is especially adept at having the majority of her insane posts deleted by the IMDB admins. In a nutshell, she/he is a nut without the shell. Keep feeding the troll. You'll see the crazy come out.

Jim

I must say that I am really intrigued by Cumberbatch's role. Baptist preacher and slave owner??? Interesting!!!

Akira

These still frames are fantastic. Ejiofor reflects pure agony.

Chris L.

I've only seen Chiwetel Ejiofor in a few films, including "Dirty Pretty Things" and "Talk to Me," but the impression left is that this man is one of the best, most quietly ferocious actors on the planet. And while it seems likely that winning awards is not high on his list of motivations (especially for this project), it would be very fitting if a host of moviegoers got to know and pronounce his name because of it.

lac

"Sounds like a bundle of laughs, right?" I bet that would not have been written about Schindler's List. But North Americans have such a problem dealing with slavery except if it is a spaghetti western type movie.

Mason

I saw it at a screening and it is not Django without the comedy. What utter crap. Sounds like something someone who knows absolutely nothing about slavery would say. You all are going to feel like fools for even posting that person's ridiculous description once you see the film for yourselves. Also, how many times does it need to be mentioned that this film is nothing like Django? Has the author of this post even researched the movie?

EGGHEAD

This film will surely prove that Tarantino should of never made the type of slavery movie he did (and I love Tarantino). To use slavery as a form of comedic entertainment seems so irresponsible as a filmmaker. Being that '12 years' is based on a true story it looks as though McQueen actually has something to say about the subject.

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