Netflix has released its first teaser trailer for rising filmmaker Ava DuVernay’s upcoming limited series titled When They See Us. Focusing on the story of the Central Park Five, Duvernay co-wrote and directed all four parts of the series which is now officially scheduled to begin streaming at the end of May.
The Central Park Five jogger case revolved around five young men of color (four Black, one Latino) who were arrested and eventually convicted of attacking and raping a young white female jogger on April 19, 1989 in Central Park. However, in 2002, the five men were exonerated in thanks to DNA evidence that confirmed another man’s guilt who also confessed to the crime. The freedmen then went on to sue the City of New York for racial discrimination and malicious prosecution, and ultimately settled their case with the city for $41 million in 2014.
Netflix has confirmed the series’ title and set the premiere date for Friday, May 31. In addition, the streaming service released its first teaser trailer in the form of a sequence shot that visually summarizes how the story begins. Also featured here are the actors who play the Central Park Five. Namely: Korey Wise (Jharrel Jerome), Antron McCray (Caleel Harris), Yusef Salaam (Ethan Herisse), Kevin Richardson (Asante Blackk), and Raymond Santana (Marquis Rodriguez) — as younger men.
DuVerney co-wrote all four episodes with Attica Locke (Empire), Michael Starrbury (Legends of Chamberlain Heights), and Robin Swicord (The Promise), in addition to directing. The series’ ensemble includes actors like Vera Farmiga (The Conjuring), Michael K. Williams (Boardwalk Empire), John Leguizamo (John Wick), Chris Chalk (Gotham), Adepero Oduye (Pariah), Jovan Adepo (Overlord), and Storm Reid (A Wrinkle in Time), among many others. Behind the camera, DuVernay reunited with her Oscar-nominated cinematographer from Middle of Nowhere and Selma, Bradford Young.
When They See Us begins streaming Friday, May 31 on Netflix. You can watch the full trailer down below: