John Cena’s upcoming political thriller The Independent has released an exciting new trailer which sees Brian Cox as an esteemed journalist who a younger colleage Jodie Turner-Smith, to “help with his columns” by investigating budget cuts. Cena plays an independent candidate who is going up against the first female presidential candidate portrayed by Ann Dowd. Cena is “practically swimming with sharks” as Cox and Turner-Smith uncover a financial conspiracy and realize one of the campaigning Senators is a liar.
The Independent is directed by two-time Emmy nominee Amy Rice, who has extensive experience covering both politics and journalism. The story seems quite thrilling given the director’s on-ground experience with features like By The People: The Election of Barack Obama and HBO’s The Newsroom, which she wrote and takes an intimate look at ethics in practically every episode. Rice directs from a screenplay by Evan Parter, who makes his feature film writing debut. Rice has cited Aaron Sorkin's The Newsroom, Chris Hegedus and D. A. Pennebaker's The War Room, and the series House of Cards as major influences on the upcoming feature.
The story chronicles the final weeks of the most consequential presidential election campaign in US history as the country is poised to elect either its first female president (Dowd) or finally break the country’s two-party gridlock with its first viable independent candidate (Cena). Covering the elections is an idealistic young journalist (Turner-Smith) who gets an opportunity to work with her idol, veteran Washington political columnist Nick Booker (Cox). While Eli is pursuing a story about budget cuts together she and Booker uncover a financial conspiracy that “places the fate of the election, the country, and democracy in their hands.”
This political thriller has been brewing for years ever since it was featured on the 2013 Blacklist – a list of the best screenplays that somehow never managed to get produced. Undoubtedly with Rice’s experience and a strong star cast attached to the feature it is going to be one to look out for by the fans of the genre. Along with Cox and Turner-Smith, the movie casts Dowd as Patricia Turnbull, Cena as Nate Sterling, Luke Kirby as Lucas Nicoll, Stephen Lang as Gordon White, Margaret Odette as Jennifer Cooke, Michael Gandolfini as Justin, Alysia Reiner as Kathy Gibbs, Imani Love as Lieutenant Penelope "Penny" James. The Independent is produced by Sam Bisbee, Theodora Dunlap, Caddy Vanasirikul, Ryan Cunningham, and Parter.
Sky Cinema premieres The Independent on February 24. You can watch the trailer below: