The Nelson Mandela biopic titled, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival along with a new trailer that features actors Idris Elba and Naomie Harris transformed by makeup to older versions of their characters.
Directed by Justin Chadwick, Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom is based on an original screenplay by William Nicholson. The film, which stars Elba as Nelson Mandela and Harris as his wife Winnie, tells the story of the South African prisoner-turned-president from his younger days through his long incarceration to the end of apartheid and his ascension to power.
The new trailer is aimed at British audiences, who will see the film a month after it’s released in the U.S. The clip has some new dramatic footage not seen in the American version, including some brief glimpses of the makeup job that makes Elba and Harris look like an older version of Nelson and Winnie.
Speaking at the Toronto Film Festival, Elba said playing Mandela was very difficult, telling the audience, “the challenges were massive, but we embraced them. He had a very difficult life, so we weren’t expected to make an easy film.”
The Pacific Rim star added, “I moved to South Africa for about three months prior to shooting, just so that I could understand what South Africa was like, and Cape Town and Johannesburg, and compare the two and understand the tribes and especially Mr. Mandela’s tribe.”
The Weinstein Company has scheduled the film for a Nov. 29 release in the U.S., and it will open in U.K. theaters in January.
Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom is expect it to be an Oscar contender. Audiences and critics responded very positively to the film when it premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival this past week.
Watch the new Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom trailer below.