Warner Bros. has released the first official trailer for the Shaka King-directed Judas and the Black Messiah.
Originally titledJesus Was My Homeboy, Judas and the Black Messiah stars Daniel Kaluuya as chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party, Fred Hampton, and Lakeith Stanfield as William O'Neal, the man who sold out Hampton to the FBI. Black Panther and Creed director Ryan Coogler served as a producer on the film.
The film will track Hampton's rise and fall through O'Neal's point-of-view. With O'Neal facing certain jail time, he cut a deal with the FBI where he would infiltrate the Black Panther Party's Illinois chapter and provide them with intel. In exchange, he would walk free.
Stanfield admitted on the Jemele Hill is Unbothered podcast earlier this year that he initially had reservations about portraying O'Neal.
"I'm like, 'Dude, I don’t know if I could do this man; you know me, I’m the furthest thing from some William O’Neal,'" Stanfield said. "After I read the script, I was crying for hours, and I never been affected by a script like that; it was just so beautifully tragic and powerful."
On December 4, 1969, Hampton was killed at the age of 21 during an early morning raid of his apartment carried out by the FBI and the Chicago Police. The authorities were aided by a detailed floor plans of the residence provided by O'Neal.
A release date has not been announced, but the final moments of the trailer indicates that Judas and the Black Messiah will be "only in theaters."
Check out the trailer up top.