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Watch Chiwetel Ejiofor Transform Into Solomon Northup in ’12 Years A Slave’

Chiwetel EjioforFox Searchlight has just released a video chronicling British born Chiwetel Ejiofor‘s journey to becoming Solomon Northup–a free man from Philadelphia who was kidnapped and sold into slavery for 12 years.

The video shows the depth of focus and concentration required to transform into a character, who cycles through deep and complex emotions for nearly every frame of the film.

“I knew it was Chiwetel,” Director Steve McQueen said. “I have been watching him for a long long time and I always felt that he was able to sort of reach that sort of performance and I knew that he could do it.”

12 Years A Slave” opens in theaters October 18 in select cities, then spreads to the mass market in successive weeks.

The cast includes:  Michael Fassbender, Lupita Nyong’o, Paul Dano, Benedict Cumberbatch, Ruth Negga, Adepero Oduye, Alfre Woodard, Scoot McNairy, Garret Dillahunt, Brad Pitt, Michael K. Williams, Paul Giamatti, Sarah Paulson and others.

Check out the featurette in the video player below.

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