- FX released the first official trailer for “Impeachment: American Crime Story” on Thursday.
- The two-minute preview looks at the fallout from Bill Clinton’s affair with Monica Lewinsky.
- There were a few surprises in the trailer, like Sarah Paulson’s transformation into Linda Tripp.
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Paulson wears a blonde wig and heavy makeup to play the late American civil servant in the 10-part season. Set photos of Paulson as Tripp went viral in April, with many Twitter users expressing bewilderment at how closely Paulson resembled Tripp with the hair and makeup. The trailer marks the first time we’ve seen the transformation in action.
The latest “American Crime Story” season tells the story of the impeachment of former president Bill Clinton (played by Clive Owen) which started with an affair he had with a White House intern named Monica Lewinsky (played by Beanie Feldstein).
Clinton and Lewinsky’s affair, and his efforts to hide the relationship, led to the president getting impeached by the House of Representatives in December 1998. He was acquitted by the Senate in early 1999.
The affair first became public after the late Tripp, who was a White House employee and Lewinsky’s coworker, recorded phone conversations between the two women where Lewinsky revealed she was having an affair with Clinton. (Tripp died in April 2020 at the age of 70.)
The trailer shows Lewinsky and Tripp becoming close friends, the two women talking on the phone, and Tripp revealing tapes of her calls with Lewinsky to the press.
Seconds later, we hear Tripp talk about a woman she is “very close to” (Lewinsky) who is having an affair with Clinton.
Tripp spends the next minute of the trailer taping her calls with Lewinsky, re-evaluating her friendship with the young woman, and exposing the affair to the press.
After the viewers have heard from Tripp, the second half of the trailer recreates some of the fallout Clinton and Lewinsky faced after the news of their affair became public, including an angry Hillary Clinton (played by Edie Falco) throwing a glass flower vase at Clinton.
“That’s me, that’s my face,” a horrified Lewinsky says while watching herself on TV.
Despite limited dialogue, we see several closeups of the then-White House intern throughout the trailer, usually paired with dramatic music.
Lewinsky said at the time of the investigation that she had worn the blue dress during a sexual encounter with Clinton a year prior and that the outfit contained his semen, which an FBI laboratory confirmed through a blood test done on the former president, CBS reported in 1998.
In the trailer, Owen copies Clinton’s media appearance word-for-word without a single finger out of place.
In late 1998, articles of impeachment brought against Clinton by the House of Representatives charged him with having lied to a grand jury and committed perjury by denying his relationship with Lewinsky while under oath.
The trailer also features scenes depicting a CNN control room and paparazzi following Lewinsky around in a van.
In a 2018 look back at the Clinton impeachment, The Washington Post said that the Drudge Report bombshell was a “scoop-of-a-scoop” that “set off a media frenzy that marked the start of the Clinton scandal that would consume much of the rest of Clinton’s presidency.”
Check out the new trailer below:
“Impeachment: American Crime Story” premieres September 7 on FX.