Lulu Wang’s The Farewell was one of the most talked about titles at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, with star Awkwafina hailed as a fest standout. A24’s new trailer for the film offers a good look at what all the fuss was about.
In The Farewell, Awkwafina takes a big step forward from Ocean’s 8 and Crazy Rich Asians, turning in a strong lead performance that blends comedy and drama to tell a story based on a real-life event in the family life of writer-director Wang.
The Farewell follows Awkwafina’s Billi, a Chinese-born, U.S.-raised writer who, despite her better instincts, returns to Changchun to take part in her family’s elaborate ruse to expedite a big wedding in order to secretly say their goodbyes to a grandmother who hasn’t been told she’s dying.
In the trailer, we hear: “Chinese people have a saying: When people get cancer they die.” A tagline for the film reads: “Based On An Actual Lie.”
In an interview with Deadline at Sundance, Wang said of the real incident that inspired the film, “I thought it was the most ridiculous thing. Also, the saddest and funny thing at the same time.”
In addition to Awkwafina, the cast includes Tzi Ma, Diana Lin, Zhao Shuzhen, Lu Hong and Jiang Yongbo. A24 releases The Farewell to theaters on July 12.
Check out the trailer above.
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