Before Edward Snowden, there was Julian Assange. The first trailer for Bill Condon’s The Fifth Estate starring Benedict Cumberbatch as the WikiLeaks icon has arrived online. The film is based on Daniel Domscheit-Berg’s book Inside WikiLeaks: My Time with Julian Assange at the World’s Most Dangerous Website and David Leigh and Luke Harding’s book WikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assange’s War on Secrecy. Check out the trailer below.
Triggering our age of high-stakes secrecy, explosive news leaks and the trafficking of classified information, WikiLeaks forever changed the game. Now, in a dramatic thriller based on real events, The Fifth Estate reveals the quest to expose the deceptions and corruptions of power that turned an Internet upstart into the 21st century’s most fiercely debated organization. The story begins as WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and his colleague Daniel Domscheit-Berg (Daniel Brühl) team up to become underground watchdogs of the privileged and powerful. On a shoestring, they create a platform that allows whistleblowers to anonymously leak covert data, shining a light on the dark recesses of government secrets and corporate crimes. Soon, they are breaking more hard news than the world’s most legendary media organizations combined. But when Assange and Berg gain access to the biggest trove of confidential intelligence documents in U.S. history, they battle each other and a defining question of our time: what are the costs of keeping secrets in a free society—and what are the costs of exposing them?”
It’s going to be interesting to see if the film portrays Assange and his organization in a positive or negative light. Judging from the trailer, i’d say the film is going to be find a balance in its portrayal of Assange as a whistleblower and activist who is viewed as a manipulative traitor by many. This film is bound to get people talking.
The Fifth Estate opens in theaters on October 18th. The drama thriller also stars Laura Linney, Anthony Mackie, David Thewlis, Alicia Vikander, and Stanley Tucci. Do you think this is bound for Oscar gold?