With its Venice Film Festival debut over the weekend and its Toronto International Film Festival debut coming later this week, a first-look clip has been released for Regina King’s One Night in Miami. The film is receiving early Oscar buzz after its Venice bow.
The film is based on the debut play of the same name from Kemp Powers. It gives a fictional account of a real-life night featuring a pre-Muhammad Ali Cassius Clay, Jim Brown, Malcolm X and Sam Cooke.
Here’s the description: Set on the night of February 25, 1964, the story follows a young Cassius Clay as he emerges from the Miami Beach Convention Center as the World Heavyweight Boxing Champion. Against all odds, he’s defeated Sonny Liston and shocked the world of boxing. While crowds of people swarm Miami Beach’s hotspots to celebrate the match, Clay — unable to stay on the island because of Jim Crow-era segregation laws — spends the night at the Hampton House Motel in Miami’s Overtown neighborhood celebrating with three of his friends: activist Malcolm X, singer Sam Cooke and football star Jim Brown. The next morning, the men emerge determined to define a new world. In One Night in Miami, Powers aims to pinpoint exactly what happened during those pivotal hours. Featuring the music of Cooke, including his hit song, “A Change Is Gonna Come,” the film offers a piercing narrative for the evening, which challenges the four men, strips them bare and reveals them for who they were.
Amazon acquired rights to the film ahead of its festival run. “One Night in Miami beautifully captures a significant moment in history when these great minds gathered and ultimately helped shape the conversation of what we know today as the civil rights movement,” said Head of Amazon Studios’ Jennifer Salke said at the time. “Regina King is a force of nature – mastering her craft in front of the camera as we’ve seen in her extensive body of work, and now taking her talent behind the camera. We’re so proud to welcome Regina and Kemp to the Amazon family.”
“Amazon’s enthusiasm for One Night in Miami is both humbling and exciting,” added King. “I am honored to have them as partners on my feature film directorial debut.” Amazon Studios is releasing the film later this year at a prime award season slot. An official soundtrack album will be released by ABKCO in conjunction with the film.
King is arguably one of the most powerful figures in Hollywood right now. She is active as an actor, producer and director. In the past two years, she’s won an Emmy, a Golden Globe and an Oscar for work in both television and film, including her portrayal of Sharon Rivers in the Barry Jenkins-directed film If Beale Street Could Talk. She also recently had a critically-acclaimed turn in Damon Lindelof’s Watchmen series on HBO. Over the past several years, she’s become an acclaimed television director, helming episodes of shows like Scandal, The Good Doctor, Pitch and Insecure. And One Night in Miami isn’t exactly King’s overall feature directorial debut, as she directed the 2013 BET television film, Let the Church Say Amen.
Watch the clip below: