Once eyed as Alfonso Gomez-Rejon's follow-up to Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, and as starring vehicle for Hugh Jackman, Collateral Beauty underwent a number of changes in rapid succession. All of those changes didn't diminish its star power, however; it actually ramped it up another notch. Will Smith took over the life-affirming drama's lead, with Kate Winslet, Keira Knightley, Edward Norton, Michael Pena, Naomie Harris, Jacob Latimore and Helen Mirren joining him. David Frankel (Marley & Me) took over as director, and now the first trailer for the holiday film has arrived.
Looking very much like a modern version of It's a Wonderful Life, the film stars Smith as a depressed man in the wake of a severe personal tragedy. His friends grow worried that he's lost his zest for life, but he takes some unconventional methods to rebound. And those methods are a little strange as he begins writing letters to Love, Time, and Death, who manifest in physical form.
This looks like it could be a very delicate emotional tightrope to walk. In the hands of someone like, say, Gabriele Muccino (Seven Pounds) I'd expect a melodramatic sap fest. Whether Frankel is the right guy to handle some touchy material remains to be seen but this trailer is a damn good start. Collateral Beauty opens December 16th meaning it will be counter-programming to those who don't care about Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.