Jon Stewart showcases his sensitivity and scope in the first trailer for Rosewater, the Daily Show host’s directorial debut. The straightforward clip sets up the film’s basic plot, which focuses on the captivating true story of Maziar Bahari (Gael Garcia Bernal), a journalist who, while covering the Iranian presidential elections in June 2009, was arrested and brutally interrogated by a man who smelled like Rosewater.
The trailer starts out with Bahari leaving his pregnant fiancée for a scheduled one-week trip. As the elections end in protests and chaos, the journalist immerses himself in his work before being taken prisoner as a suspected spy. The clip – which includes actual news footage – focuses primarily on Bahari’s struggle to stay sane and hopeful in the dangerous situation. “Your wife will never see you again,” says his interrogator. “Your child will never know you.”
In addition to directing, Stewart also wrote the film’s screenplay, which was adapted from the book Then They Came for Me: A Family’s Story of Love, Captivity and Survival, co-written by Bahari and Aimee Molloy. Stewart even had a real-life part in Bahari’s harrowing tale: Part of the journalist’s spy suspicions stemmed from an appearance on The Daily Show.
Rosewater was filmed in Jordan last summer, as Stewart took an eight-week hiatus from The Daily Show. The movie is scheduled to hit theaters on November 7th, though it will be screened prior to its big screen premiere at the Telluride Film Festival and Toronto Film Festival.