Idris Elba in Beast
Idris Elba in Beast

Idris Elba is a man fighting nature in the first official Beast trailer. Elba stars in the upcoming survival thriller as Dr. Nate Samuels, a recently widowed man, as he travels to South Africa with his daughters to visit a game reserve managed by an old family friend, only for he and his family to find themselves stalked by a lion who has survived poachers and is taking ferocious revenge on humans. Alongside Elba, the cast for Beast includes Iyana Halley, Leah Sava Jeffries, Sharlto Copley and Riley Keough.

Development on Beast was first announced in late 2020 when Elba signed on to star and 2 Guns and Everest director Baltasar Kormákur attached to direct. The action thriller is based on a story treatment from Breaking In‘s Jaime Primak-Sullivan while Ryan Engle, who also penned the script for the Gabrielle Union-led thriller, wrote the screenplay. With production on Beast having occurred in mid-2021, the film is now gearing up for a summer release and audiences are getting their first proper glimpse at the Elba-led thriller.

With just under three months remaining until the film hits theaters, Universal Pictures have unveiled the first official Beast trailer. The video introduces Elba’s widowed doctor as he struggles to fight for he and his family’s survival with a vicious lion in a South African game reserve. Check out the thrilling first trailer below:

The official Beast trailer comes as the survival thriller genre has enjoyed a steady uptick in popularity over the past six years since The Revenant and The Martian dominated in Academy Award nominations, with the former bringing home three wins. Though no genre outings since have earned similar prestige award nominations, many have continued to enjoy critical and commercial success, including the Blake Lively-starring The Shallows and Sam Raimi-produced alligator thriller Crawl. The first Beast trailer points towards more of the same pulse-pounding thrills seen in the latter examples as Elba and his family must not only face the elements of the South African game reserve but also a vengeful lion.

Interestingly, Beast is not director Baltasar Kormákur’s first venture into the survival thriller genre after being at the helm for both true story based films Everest and Adrift, the former of which received positive reviews while the latter divided critics. The official Beast trailer shows a nice return to the genre for the Icelandic filmmaker as he utilizes the vast and diverse terrain of the film’s setting for a tense cat-and-human game and excitingly teasing Elba’s transition from a modest family man to an all-out survivalist. The wait for Beast is nearly over as the film is set to hit theaters on August 19.