Following its 2021 Sundance Film Festival premiere, Passing will arrive in theaters and on Netflix this fall.

Based on the novel by Nella Larsen, the story follows two Black women living during the height of the Harlem Renaissance. Both Irene and Clare can “pass” as white, but they each choose to live on opposite sides of society’s color line.

Get your first look at the period drama Passing in the trailer below.

The feature stars Tessa Thompson as Irene and Ruth Negga as Clare, childhood best friends reunited by circumstance. But the pair ultimately chose different paths in life. And now the more they try to come together, the more their lives start to unravel. 

Rebecca Hall adapted the screenplay for Passing from Larsen’s novel. The feature marks Hall’s directorial debut. The film uses the concept of “passing” to explore racial identity, gender roles, sexuality, and the performance of femininity.

Here’s the full synopsis from Netflix:

Adapted from the celebrated 1929 novel of the same name by Nella Larsen, Passing tells the story of two Black women, Irene Redfield (Tessa Thompson) and Clare Kendry (Academy Award nominee Ruth Negga), who can “pass” as white but choose to live on opposite sides of the color line during the height of the Harlem Renaissance in late 1920s New York. After a chance encounter reunites the former childhood friends one summer afternoon, Irene reluctantly allows Clare into her home, where she ingratiates herself to Irene’s husband (André Holland) and family, and soon her larger social circle as well. As their lives become more deeply intertwined, Irene finds her once-steady existence upended by Clare, and Passing becomes a riveting examination of obsession, repression and the lies people tell themselves and others to protect their carefully constructed realities.

In addition to Thompson and Negga, the film stars Bill Camp, Gbenga Akinnagbe, Antoinette Crowe-Legacy, and Alexander Skarsgård.

Passing releases in select theaters October 27. It will arrive on Netflix two weeks later, November 10.

Source: Netflix