Netflix releases the See You Yesterday trailer. Produced by Spike Lee, the science fiction adventure film incorporates the Black Lives Matter movement for a story about fate and family. See You Yesterday marks the directorial debut of Stefon Bristol, Lee’s protege from NYU’s Graduate Film program.
Co-written by Bristol and Fredrica Bailey, See You Yesterday follows high school friends Claudette “C.J.” Walker (Eden Duncan-Smith) and Sebastian J. Thomas (Dante Crichlow). The two science prodigies invent backpacks that allow for time travel, and they decide to test out their technology after C.J.'s older brother Calvin (Brian “Stro” Bradley) is killed during a confrontation with the police. Netflix describes See You Yesterday as “a sci-fi adventure grounded in familial love, cultural divides and the universal urge to change the wrongs of the past.” The following performers are listed as the film’s co-stars: Marsha Stephanie Blake, Johnathan Nieves, Wavyy Jonez, Myra Lucretia Taylor, and Ron Bobb Semple. Last December, Netflix first acquired See You Yesterday, which is based on Bristol and Bailey’s 2017 short film of the same name.
On YouTube, Netflix released See You Yesterday’s trailer. The clip begins with a record needle drop and R&B groove, as the young protagonists develop their innovative backpacks and discuss which colleges they’d like to attend. The trailer intercuts scientific and domestic discussions with street visuals, thus establishing a sense of environment. This precedes the wrongful murder of C.J.’s 19-year-old brother, an inciting incident that prompts the young girl to “go back and fix it.” From there, a graphic names the aforementioned Lee as the producer of See You Yesterday, and the narrative tone picks up as C.J. and Sebastian formulate a plan for their time travel adventure. The characters acknowledge their lack of control over Calvin’s tragic death, but they ultimately decide to experiment to see what’s possible. By the trailer’s end, the characters approach their maximum number of “jumps,” and manage to warn Calvin about his impending death. Check out the See You Yesterday trailer and poster below.
Now 62-years-old, Lee continues to strengthen his legacy as an iconic filmmaker. Thirty years ago, Lee’s third feature Do the Right Thing offered a fresh take on the black experience in America, and he subsequently earned an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay. Twenty-five years later, Lee once again addressed inner city life with the musical crime drama Chi-Raq, a commentary on the gang violence that afflicts Chicago’s south side neighborhoods. Most recently, Lee directed the 2018 biographical drama BlacKkKlansman, which details the true story of Ron Stallworth, a black police officer who infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan. Produced for $15 million, BlacKkKlansman made over $92 million at the box office, and Lee won an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay.
Lee is mostly known as a film director, but he’s also a prolific producer. By chronicling his own experiences, along with historical events and timely issues that shed light on the black experience, Lee has established himself as one of the most powerful cinematic storytellers. With See You Yesterday, Bristol now has a chance to shine, and to tell a familiar story with an original twist.
See You Yesterday will launch globally on Netflix May 17th.