In the trailer for Barry Jenkins’ Amazon Prime Video limited series, “The Underground Railroad,” a young slave named Cora Randall (Thuso Mbedu) escapes from a Georgia plantation using the famous Underground Railroad. Only in Jenkins’ show, this historical route to freedom is not named metaphorically, but quite literally to freedom is quite literally an actual railroad full of engineers and conductors, and a secret network of tracks and tunnels beneath the Southern soil.
The 10-episode limited series is based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Colson Whitehead, and follows Cora on her journey as she is pursued by Ridgeway (played by Joel Edgerton), “a bounty hunter who is fixated on bringing her back to the plantation she escaped; especially since her mother Mabel is the only one he has never caught,” per Amazon.
“As she travels from state to state, Cora contends with the legacy of the mother that left her behind and her own struggles to realize a life she never thought was possible.”
The trailer for the limited series, which was released Thursday, shows Cora learning from people she meets as she continues her escape from Ridgeway, learning lessons like, “Nothing was given, all was earned. Hold on to what belongs to you.”
“The Underground Railroad” stars Thuso Mbedu, Chase W. Dillon and Joel Edgerton. Aaron Pierre, William Jackson Harper, Sheila Atim, Amber Gray, Peter De Jersey, Chukwudi Iwuji, Damon Herriman, Lily Rabe, Irone Singleton, Mychal-Bella Bowman, Marcus “MJ” Gladney, Jr., Will Poulter and Peter Mullan also star.
Jenkins serves as showrunner and directs all ten episodes of “The Underground Railroad” limited series. He executive produces alongside Adele Romanski, Mark Ceryak, Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, Brad Pitt, Richard Heus, Jacqueline Hoyt and Colson Whitehead.
The series is a production of Plan B, Pastel and Big Indie with Amazon Studios.
“The Underground Railroad” launches May 14 on Amazon Prime Video.