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'The Walk' trailer: Watch Joseph Gordon-Levitt balance between the Twin Towers

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In Robert Zemeckis’ The Walk, Joseph Gordon-Levitt portrays Philippe Petit, the French aerialist and tightrope walker who, in 1974, recruited a group of international colleagues to help him walk between the towers of the brand new World Trade Center. “The caper is really compelling. It’s outrageous,” Zemeckis told EW in December. “It’s the story of an artist who risks his life to create a performance.”

A new trailer for the film arrives the same day as the news that the New York Film Festival will open its 53rd year with the world premiere of The Walk, continuing the recent trend of giving the coveted opening slot to aspiring Oscar contenders. Gone Girl opened the festival in 2014, and Captain Phillips had the honors in 2013.

The Walk is based on Petit’s 2002 memoir To Reach the Clouds, and Petit’s story was also told in the documentary Man on Wire, which won an Academy Award for Best Documentary in 2009.

The Walk is rated PG and will be released Oct. 2, 2015.