With just over two months until Oscar nominations are announced, the Best Picture race seems pretty loaded. Gravity, 12 Years a Slave and Captain Phillips feel like near locks to get nominations, while future releases Inside Llewyn Davis, Saving Mr. Banks and Her are riding off film festival buzz and could be strong possibilities for the top category as well.
Then there’s Peter Berg’s war drama Lone Survivor, which has received extremely positive buzz from test screenings, especially around Mark Wahlberg’s lead performance. It could be a late-in-the-game release that may score a slew of nods if audiences and the Academy are up for more war games.
A new trailer for Lone Survivor was released today and it definitely propels a greater intensity than August’s teaser. It also contains very bold clippings from early reviews of the film. Words like “powerhouse” and “extraordinary,” as well as the all-star cast (Wahlberg, Taylor Kitsch, Eric Bana, Ben Foster and Emile Hirsch), may help to sell a film set in Afghanistan as movies about the war on terror usually don’t perform too well at the box office.
The film is based on the novel Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10, by Marcus Luttrell. “Operating Red Wings” was a perilous and ill-fated military operation, where four Navy SEALS went into Taliban territory to apprehend a terrorist leader.
Apparently, Berg spent some significant time with a SEAL platoon in Iraq in 2010, which likely means that Lone Survivor will be a pretty accurate representation of the U.S. military.
Universal is positioning the drama for a Best Picture berth, with a limited release on December 27 and an expansion on January 10 – the same release pattern Sony used for military dramas (and Oscar nominees) Black Hawk Down and Zero Dark Thirty.
Check out the trailer below and let us know what you think.