Can we have sympathy for J. Edgar Hoover? That seems to be what the new trailer for Clint Eastwood’s “J. Edgar” is asking audiences.
Possibly the most reviled American lawman of the 20th Century, Hoover intimidated presidents, celebrities and pretty much whomever he wanted during his long reign atop the F.B.I. The new biopic, which is a prime awards season player, finds Leonardo DiCaprio portraying the controversial figure, Armie Hammer as Cyde Tosen (his no. 2 and possibly more), Naomi Watts as Helen Gandy (Hoover’s secretary for 54 years) and Judi Dench pulling out an American accent as his mother. Written by “Milk” screenwriter Dustin Lance Black, the preview indicates the film isn’t shying away from his rumored homosexuality or run ins with the Kennedys.
The film has a wide historical canvas, but what is most striking is DiCaprio’s accent. Hoover accent wavered over the years (you can listen to a phone conversation between Hoover and Lyndon B. Johnson here), but it feels quite apparent here. Granted, DiCaprio’s done shaky accents before. He even received an Oscar nomination for his role in “Blood Diamond” where he tried out as South African accent. The preview also gives prominence to Hammer and Dench.
You can watch the new trailer on itunes here.
“J. Edgar” opens nationwide on Nov. 9.
What do you think of the trailer? Does DiCaprio’s Hoover work for you? Share you thoughts below.