Watch: Idris Elba battles a hungry lion in first trailer for survival thriller ‘Beast’

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All you really need to know about Universal’s upcoming survival thriller Beast is that the pitch basically boils down to ‘Idris Elba vs. a lion”, which is more than enough to sell it to the masses.

Beyond that, there’s a decent amount of pedigree attached to the project on either side of the camera, and the first trailer has instantly positioned the glorified B-movie as a potential summertime sleeper hit. Elba stars as recent widower Dr. Nate Samuels, who heads off to South Africa with his children to visit a game reserve staffed by a longtime friend.

Once there, though, things spiral out of control when a hungry predator decides to place the Samuels family and company at the top of the menu, forcing Elba into action in an effort to keep both himself and his family alive. Based on the footage, Beast looks like it could be a hell of a lot of fun when it comes to theaters on August 19.

beast
via Universal

Helmed by Everest and Adrift director Baltasar Kormákur, penned by Non-Stop, The Commuter, and Rampage scribe Ryan Engles, with support coming from Sharlto Copley among others, there’s plenty of genre-friendly names involved in Beast, which means it hopefully delivers on the premise to become the latest ‘big star vs. bigger animal’ flick to make an impact.

Elba is always reliable when it comes to action-heavy performances, and the visual effects look almost as luscious as the sweeping backdrops, so we can only hope Beast brings the heightened thrills and oodles of excitement we’ve been promised.