The Queen's Gambit trailer

Look out, boys, because this ain’t your daddy’s chess game! This is about the ladies! In the new Netflix series The Queen’s Gambit, the prolific Anya Taylor-Joy plays a talented chess player who drinks, does drugs, and smashes the boundaries of the male-dominated world of competitive chess. It’s hard to make chess seem sexy, but this series, which hails from Scott Frank, is going to try, damn it!

The Queen’s Gambit Trailer

Hey, did you know Netflix had a new Scott Frank series starring Anya Taylor-Joy due out in a few months? Neither did I, but here it is – The Queen’s Gambit. Frank, a writer and filmmaker whose credits include Out of SightMinority ReportLogan, and more, serves as co-creator, executive producer, writer, director, and showrunner on the series, which features Anya Taylor-Joy as a hard-living chess prodigy. Here’s the synopsis:

Based on the novel by Walter Tevis, the Netflix limited series drama The Queen’s Gambit is a coming-of-age story that explores the true cost of genius. Abandoned and entrusted to a Kentucky orphanage in the late 1950s, a young Beth Harmon (Anya Taylor-Joy) discovers an astonishing talent for chess while developing an addiction to tranquilizers provided by the state as a sedative for the children. Haunted by her personal demons and fueled by a cocktail of narcotics and obsession, Beth transforms into an impressively skilled and glamorous outcast while determined to conquer the traditional boundaries established in the male-dominated world of competitive chess.

I’ll be the first to admit I’m too stupid to play chess. That said, while there have been many pieces of entertainment devoted to people playing the game, it doesn’t always make for thrilling watching. But Anya Taylor-Joy is a strong actor and Scott Frank is a fantastic writer, so The Queen’s Gambit might end up surprising us all. In addition to Taylor-Joy, the series features Marielle Heller, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Moses Ingram, Harry Melling, and Bill Camp. Look for it on Netflix on October 23, 2020.

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