3 Generations has seen controversy follow it since it was shot three years ago. The movie, which may well be the first mainstream film to depict a person transitioning, stars Elle Fanning as a transgender boy as he grows up in a multigenerational Brooklyn household. Why the movie was shot in 2014 and only now getting a trailer, we don't know, but we do know that Susan Sarandon, Elle Fanning, and Naomi Watts are all excellent actresses at the top of their game.
The film has been slapped with an R rating, something producer Harvey Weinstein is fighting furiously, but the trailer doesn't look at all R-rated to us. The film on display is one that takes the struggles of a family to accept and comprehend their transgender son's true identity while dealing with their own past mistakes. Sarandon stars as Ray's lesbian grandmother, who initially doesn't understand why Ray doesn't just identify as a lesbian. Watts is Ray's doting mother with an apparently spotty sexual history.
Fanning's casting initially caused a stir because casting a cisgender woman in a role as a trans boy seemed like appropriation, especially alongside the then-current choice of Eddie Redmayne as the star of The Danish Girl. In this brief look at Fanning, she seems up to filling the role. But we can't be sure that there isn't some indelible nuance lost by not choosing an actor more familiar with the particular challenge that transitioning presents.
Watch the trailer below.