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Spielberg’s THE POST Trailer Takes on a Tyrannical President

For 15 days in 1971, the United States had no free press. After The New York Times published three articles detailing the truth about the extent of our goals and expansion of the Vietnam War, drawing upon classified documents leaked by defense analyst Daniel Ellsberg (dubbed “The Pentagon Papers”), President Nixon got a court order for them to cease publication of the documents. They appealed, and the case went all the way to the Supreme Court.

In the meantime, The Washington Post had a decision to make. Publish and risk the same fate as The New York Times, potential jail time, and the potential destruction of the newspaper, or do nothing, and acquiesce to a tyrant silencing the press. If this isn’t perfect fodder for a Steven Spielberg movie starring Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep, I don’t know what is.

The Post‘s trailer is a barn burner of concerned looks and impossibly high ethical stakes. Streep plays Katharine Graham, the Post‘s publisher whose shoulders carried the burden of the decision to publish and/or perish. Hanks plays Ben Bradlee, the executive editor of the paper. The rest of the cast is an insanely stacked deck of talent, including Sarah Paulson, Bob Odenkirk, Michael Stuhlbarg, Carrie Coon, Bradley Whitford, Alison Brie, and more.

This timely film hits select theaters in December, with a full release in 2018, meaning that Spielberg will have both a trenchant political drama and a geeky crowd-pleaser (in Ready Player One) in the same year. It’s like 1993 all over again.

Image: 20th Century Fox

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