How to Watch ‘Emancipation’: Is the Will Smith Drama Streaming?

Will Smith stars as an enslaved laborer who battles treacherous conditions to reunite with his family

Will Smith in "Emancipation" (Apple TV+)

Hailing from director Antoine Fuqua, “Emancipation” was the subject of Oscar buzz even before its premiere.

Inspired by a true story, the historical drama follows an enslaved laborer named Peter, played by Will Smith, as he escapes the clutches of abusive plantation owners to reunite with his family. The treacherous journey tests Peter’s persistence as he trudges through the brutal Louisiana swamps.

If you watch to check out the film for yourself, here’s how to watch “Emancipation” when it hits screens this December.

When Does “Emancipation” Come Out?

The drama premieres Dec. 2.

Is “Emancipation” Streaming or in Theaters?

The film will be released in theaters only on Dec. 2, but you can stream “Emancipation” exclusively on Apple TV+ beginning on Dec. 9.

What Is “Emancipation” About?

Set in the 1860s, Peter, who has been abused by the vicious owners of a plantation, plots an escape plan to reunite with his family. Battling with both the Louisiana swamps and with slave owners eager to capture him, Peter’s determination to find his family withstands even the toughest trials.

The film was inspired by an enslaved laborer whose scarred back became the subject of 1863 photos — one titled “The Scourged Back” — which contributed to the public sentiment to end slavery.

Who Is in the “Emancipation” Cast?

Will Smith stars as Peter while Ben Foster, Charmaine Bingwa, Gilbert Owuor, Ronnie Gene Blevins and Aaron Moten also join the cast. Other notable cast members include Michael Luwoye, Steven Ogg, Grant Harvey, Mustafa Shakir and Paul Ben-Victor.

Watch the trailer: