Is it too early to start thinking about Oscar season? Fox Searchlight and Battle of the Sexes doesn’t seem to believe it, and so far neither do we.
The first trailer for Battle of the Sexes arrived online this morning after months of hype for the upcoming feature from Little Miss Sunshine co-directors Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris. In it, viewers meet and serial hustler Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell) and witness his decision to challenge Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) to a tennis match. The game itself ultimately becomes background noise to the large war of the sexes happening in culture at the same time, with King and Riggs become figureheads for opposing sides without necessarily intended to do so.
This will be Stone’s first role since warning the Oscar for La La Land earlier this year. Carell has not yet been nominated for such a title, but his performances in films such as Foxcatcher have more than proven his dramatic chops. This film seems to cater to both his legendary comedic talents, as well as his more recent dramatic work, which should work in his favor.
Battle of the Sexes opens September 22.
The official synopsis reads:
The electrifying 1973 tennis match between World number one Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) and ex-champ and serial hustler Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell) was billed as THE BATTLE OF THE SEXES and became one of the most watched televised sports events of all time. The match caught the zeitgeist and sparked a global conversation on gender equality, spurring on the feminist movement. Trapped in the media glare, King and Riggs were on opposite sides of a binary argument, but off-court each was fighting more personal and complex battles. With a supportive husband urging her to fight the Establishment for equal pay, the fiercely private King was also struggling to come to terms with her own sexuality, while Riggs gambled his legacy and reputation in a bid to relive the glories of his past. Together, Billie and Bobby served up a cultural spectacle that resonated far beyond the tennis courts and animated the discussions between men and women in bedrooms and boardrooms around the world.