Apple TV+ has released the trailer for their upcoming true crime series, Manhunt. The series will explore the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln and the hunt for his killer, John Wilkes Booth. Based on the true-crime book by James L. Swanson, ‘Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln’s Killer,’ the series promises an in-depth look into this historical event.
The trailer opens with John Wilkes Booth (Anthony Boyle) picking up a gun as he walks to a mirror. Boyle’s voiceover says, “I was born with a chance to be somebody. I’m gonna be the most famous man in the whole world.” As President Lincoln (Hamish Linklater) is congratulated about the end of the war, we soon see him at the fateful moment in Ford’s Theatre in Washington, D.C., on April 14, 1865. The attention then switches to the hunt for Booth, led by Lincoln’s close friend and Secretary of War, Edwin Stanton (Tobias Menzies).
Creator Monica Beletsky discussed the use of flashbacks within the series to evoke a deeper emotional response from the audience regarding Lincoln’s death. This decision was made because the majority of the series unfolds after Lincoln’s assassination.
During Monday’s Television Critics Association panel, she said “Flashbacks are used to tell the story psychologically, so when it was a moment of revealing a character’s motivation or how they’re thinking through a decision in the present.” I think really with this story, a really important thing is that people understand and feel their dilemmas and their loss and the challenges that are facing these characters in this very pressurized political thriller.”
The official synopsis for the series is as follows: Based on The New York Times bestselling and Edgar Award-winning nonfiction book from author James L. Swanson, “Manhunt” is a conspiracy thriller about one of the best known but least understood crimes in history, the astonishing story of the hunt for John Wilkes Booth in the aftermath of Abraham Lincoln’s assassination.
Manhunt will premiere with two episodes on March 15, followed by episodes airing weekly.