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The First Look At “Death Note” Is Amazing (If You Don’t Dwell On The Casting)

Check out the first trailer for Death Note, an adaptation of the hardcore manga international phenomenon coming to Netflix.

The First Look At “Death Note” Is Amazing (If You Don’t Dwell On The Casting)

WHAT: The first trailer for the American adaptation of the Japanese, manga-adapted hit, Death Note.

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WHO: You’re Next and The Guest director Adam Wingard, and the pulsing center of so much
cinematic happenings recently, Netflix.

WHY WE CARE: On the surface, this first glimpse at Death Note has everything fans of the Japanese graphic novel could want. It looks grim, violent, and hyperstylized, a major level-jump for a director who came up through the world of ultra-indie horror. The only issue that is sure to weigh on some fans is actually seeing the indelibly caucasian visage of star Nat Wolff in place of its Japanese predecessors. Whitewashing is a major issue in Hollywood at the moment, and the outcry against it has followed this adaptation at every step of its production.

This trailer may do little to alleviate those concerns, despite how much the tone appears to remain faithful to the source material. For those unfamiliar, the story concerns a high school student who obtains a darkly magical notebook, which asks its owner to write down the names of anyone he or she wishes dead. Chaos ensues. If it sounds like your cup of problematically cast tea, Death Note lands on Netflix August 25th.

About the author

Joe Berkowitz is a writer and staff editor at Fast Company. His next book, Away with Words, is available June 13th from Harper Perennial.

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