The trailer for the late Chadwick Boseman’s final film, Netflix’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, has been released, already causing Oscar buzz.
The clip shows Boseman, who passed away on August 28 from stage 3 colon cancer, in a tuxedo accompanying co-star and acclaimed actor, Viola Davis as they sing the blues.
Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom is based on August Wilson’s award-winning play of the same name and centres on the trailblazing blues artist Ma Rainey (Davis). Boseman plays her love interest, Levee, a trumpeter who aspires to have his own successful career by putting “a contemporary spin on old-fashioned songs.”
Set in Chicago in 1927, the film also shows the musicians “grapple with issues of race, music, relationships and the exploitation of Black recording artists”.
Joining Boseman and Davis are Glynn Turman (Fargo), Colman Domingo (Lincoln) and Michael Potts (Show Me a Hero).
WATCH: The official trailer for Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. Story continues…
Boseman’s turn in the film has already received mentions for an Oscar, as well as one for his role in Spike Lee’s Da 5 Bloods as Stormin’. According to Variety, seven individual artists may well be in the running for a posthumous Oscar at next year’s event.
Boseman, who was most famous for his role in 2018’s Black Panther, kept his cancer battle private, with even film director, Ryan Coogler, describing the 43-year-old as “a man of faith, dignity and pride”.
“I haven’t grieved a loss this acute before. I spent the last year preparing, imagining and writing words for him to say, that we weren’t destined to see,” Coogler wrote in a statement at the time of his death.
“It leaves me broken knowing that I won’t be able to watch another close-up of him in the monitor again or walk up to him and ask for another take.
“I will tell stories about being there for some of the brilliant sparks till the end of my days. What an incredible mark he’s left for us.”