Matthew McConaughey has been on quite the upward acting trajectory of late. Earning accolades for his performances in True Detective season 1 and the films InterstellarDallas Buyers Club, and The Wolf of Wall Street, as well as a rumored connection to the development of a theatrical adaptation of Stephen King’s The Stand, McConaughey appears to be taking these opportunities he’s created to flex his thespian muscles even more, as seen in the latest trailer for STX Entertainment’s Free State of Jones. The film, set to hit theaters in May, is based on the true story of Newton Knight, a southern farmer who organizes an uprising to break away from the Confederacy.

The role seems tailor-made for McConaughey, who utilizes both his accent and his innate penchant for defiant individualism to pour an authenticity into the character that other actors might not be able to convincingly evoke. McConaughey’s current creative renaissance seems to be the result of a culmination of an actor getting to finally stretch his legs and I’m appreciating it and hope the ride continues for a goodly bit.

FREE STATE OF JONES theatrical poster

FREE STATE OF JONES theatrical poster

Free State of Jones, directed and written by Gary Ross and starring Matthew McConaughey, Keri Russell, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Mahershala Ali, premieres May 13th.

From the official movie description:

Studio: STX Entertainment
Genre: Epic Action-Drama
Cast: Matthew McConaughey, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Mahershala Ali, Keri Russell
Director: Gary Ross
Writer: Gary Ross
Producers: Scott Stuber, Jon Kilik, Gary Ross
Release: May 13, 2016
Written and directed by four-time Oscar® nominee Gary Ross (The Hunger Games, Seabiscuit, Pleasantville), and starring Oscar® winner Matthew McConaughey, Free State of Jones is an epic action-drama set during the Civil War, and tells the story of defiant Southern farmer, Newt Knight, and his extraordinary armed rebellion against the Confederacy. Banding together with other small farmers and local slaves, Knight launched an uprising that led Jones County, Mississippi to secede from the Confederacy, creating a Free State of Jones. Knight continued his struggle into Reconstruction, distinguishing him as a compelling, if controversial, figure of defiance long beyond the War.