Justin Timberlake’s New Movie ‘Palmer’ Is Already Inspiring Parents Everywhere

The Apple TV film about a surrogate father raising a gender-nonconforming child will be released January 29th.

On December 17th, Justin Timberlake tweeted out the first trailer for his upcoming film Palmer, directed by Fisher Stevens (actor in The Blacklist, The Good Fight, and Succession) and written by Cheryl Guerriero (Hunting Season). It’s about a man trying to start fresh in his hometown after serving time but who finds himself responsible for a young boy who doesn’t conform to traditional gender tropes. The trailer alone is heartwarming and powerful, and parents of gender-nonconforming children are more than excited to see their journey represented in Hollywood.

First look at #PALMER directed by Fisher Stevens (script by Cheryl Guerriero), Timberlake tweeted on the 17th. This story is really important to me and I’m proud to be part of it.

Timberlake plays Eddie Palmer, a former high school football star struggling to work his way back into the good graces of his friends and neighbors. While doing so, he becomes a surrogate parent to Sam (Ryder Allen), who is abandoned by his troubled mother.

While getting to know Sam, Eddie learns that fitting into the box society has prescribed to you isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be and takes inspiration from the kid who simply wants to be himself and not be hated for it.

It’s a story that rings true for so many parents of gender-nonconforming and nonbinary kids. One parent replied to Timberlake’s tweet, writing, “My 8 year old is exactly like this. He was a butterfly and a princess for Halloween. He loves magic and fairies and princesses and dresses…There are days he is picked on for being or liking girl things. We embrace him as he is. Perfection.”

“I have a 7 year old gender non-conforming son,” another parent tweeted. “Breaking the social barrier you highlight in this film has been the most difficult in my opinion. Thanks for this.”

Another parent wrote, This is like my son and I’m bawling watching this trailer. It’s hard raising a child that is unique and trying to protect them from bullying and the cruelty.

“I’m hoping you & this film do us parents with transgender & gender nonconforming kids proud,” another parent tweeted, saying that Palmer could be the story that gets people to listen and support “our children’s authentic selves.”

The story is also hitting a soft spot for parents who had children while incarcerated. “I had my first child when I was incarcerated,” one parent added. “It is [and] was a hardship that I face in life today…My daughter has also been so very different! Blessed to see what #PALMER has in store for all of us!”

And some who have real-life experience living this story are praising Palmer, despite feeling like they can’t bring themselves to watch, as it hits too close to home.

Palmer touches on a topic that affects so many, yet remains underrepresented in the mainstream. Hopefully the story will enlighten viewers on what it’s like to raise a gender-nonconforming child or be gender nonconforming.

Just make sure you have plenty of tissues when Palmer hits Apple TV on January 29th.

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