- The trailer for Matt Johnson-directed “BlackBerry” arrived online this week.
- Star Jay Baruchel has a personal connection to the film himself as a lover of his BlackBerry.
- The film is set to be released in US theaters on May 12.
BlackBerry fanatics and TV fans are excited by the new trailer for an upcoming film named after the now-obsolete, clunky keyboard phone.
The “BlackBerry” trailer dropped Wednesday, and it’s trending at number 21 on YouTube only 24 hours later. Critics and nostalgic BlackBerry fans alike say they’re thrilled by the cast and the chance to revisit the iconic phone.
The film uses the 2015 book “Losing the Signal: The Untold Story Behind the Extraordinary Rise and Spectacular Fall of BlackBerry” by writers Jacquie McNish and Sean Silcoff as its source material, The Verge reported. It tells the story of the rise and fall of Canadian tech company Research in Motion, the maker of the BlackBerry.
The cast includes Canadian actor Jay Baruchel playing co-founder Mike Lazaridis, YouTuber SungWo Cho — also known by his screen name ProZD — and “Always Sunny in Philadelphia” actor Glenn Howerton, who sports a balding head in the film.
The online response from TV and tech buffs has been mostly positive ahead of the film’s May 12 release in theaters.
“I’m shocked that BlackBerry actually looks like it might be pretty damn good,” Canadian tech editor Patrick O’Rourke tweeted.
Others were less thrilled about the quality of the project, but intrigued by seeing Howerton, who plays former Research In Motion co-CEO Jim Balsillie, in a more serious role. Howerton is known for his work in comedy TV shows such as “The Mindy Project” and “That ’80s Show.”
Although the film only has been screened at festivals in Germany and Austin, some jokingly called for Oscar nominations.
—Kait (@G00DfeIIas) March 14, 2023
In its coverage of the new trailer, New York Magazine’s Vulture dubbed the movie a “geek tragedy,” and likened it to other tech stories that have hit the big screen, like “The Social Network” or “Jobs.”
Baruchel, who previously starred in “How To Train Your Dragon,” shared his personal interest in the film — and BlackBerrys — with Vulture.
“I had one until about three or four years ago. I adored them. But even then, it was this outdated product. It went from being the thing that created everything to being severely outdated, very, very, very quickly,” Baruchel told Vulture.
In its prime, the Blackberry amassed a loyal following of corporate execs and consumer who loved the keyboard phone capable of BlackBerry Messenger, or BBM.
It reached its peak in 2009, owning 20% of the global smartphone market. But, by the 2010s it was clear touchscreen phones would soon take over, Insider’s Cheryl Teh reported. The Matt Johnson-directed “BlackBerry” teases a view into the founders’ reaction to Steve Jobs unveiling Apple’s iPhone around the same time.
Although the film might strike the hearts of BlackBerry loyalists or Y2K enthusiasts, the phones most likely won’t be back. In January 2022, the use of the software that supported the phone was decommissioned, according to Teh’s report.