Focus Features has released the official first trailer for “Wolf,” the intriguing sophomore effort from “Nocturnal” filmmaker Nathalie Biancheri. The drama, about a man who believes he is a wolf trapped in a human body, premiered earlier this month at the Toronto International Film Festival. Critics were drawn in by the unique subject matter of “species dysphoria” and standout performances by emerging stars George MacKay and Lily-Rose Depp.
IndieWire’s Kate Erbland described the unusual premise: “The film follows MacKay as Jacob, a young man who suffers from ‘species dysphoria’ and believes himself to be a wolf. Sent to a clinic that specializes in the disorder, Jacob is forced to confront his true nature, while also falling under the spell of Wildcat (Lily-Rose Depp), a mysterious fellow patient at what’s blithely termed ‘the zoo.'”
Though not currently recognized by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, species dysphoria is an umbrella term applied to a disorder in which individuals believe they have been born into the body of the wrong species. Having begun her career as a documentary filmmaker, Biancheri was drawn to the offbeat subject because of its real-world implications.
“I’m going to take the intellectual, emotional side that I find most interesting, and that is, what does it mean to feel like you belong to different skin?,” she told IndieWire of her process before the film’s recent TIFF premiere. “Which is obviously a very topical, and to use the dreaded word, universal feeling to explore. And, I think to a certain extent, each one of us feels it for different reasons.”
MacKay has already charted an impressive course in his short career with standout roles in lauded films such as “1917” and “Captain Fantastic.” With such an impressive performance, “Wolf” will surely launch him into new and unusual leading man territory. He certainly knows a thing or two about commitment. In order to get into character, MacKay told IndieWire that he spent the early days of lockdown crawling around his home like a wolf.
Focus Features will release “Wolf” in theaters on December 3. Check out the first official trailer below.