Colin Firth …Colin Firth in The Railway ManFresh from making its world premiere out in Toronto at the end of last week, the first trailer has landed online for Jonathan Teplitzky’s The Railway Man, giving us our first good look at Colin Firth in the historical drama.

Firth takes the lead as the eponymous railway enthusiast, and with Nicole Kidman starring opposite in the female lead, the awards buzz is already beginning to swirl.

Eric Lomax (Colin Firth) is a quiet, middle-aged radio and railway enthusiast. He meets kind, sunny Patti (Nicole Kidman) one afternoon on a Scottish train. The year is 1983. A whirlwind courtship and wedding follow, but on their wedding night, and for many nights to come, Eric succumbs to graphic, paralyzing nightmares. He provides Patti no explanation.

Confused and hurt by her new husband’s remoteness, Patti turns to Eric’s friend Finlay (Stellan Skarsgård), who finally discloses her husband’s harrowing secret: along with thousands of other British soldiers captured by the Japanese during the Second World War, Eric was forced to work on the construction of the Thailand- Burma Railway — the so-called Death Railway. When a secret radio he had built was discovered, he was brutally tortured by a Japanese officer. Realizing that there is only one way to save her marriage, Patti begins the search for the man who haunts her husband’s soul.

Stellan Skarsgård, Hiroyuki Sanada, Jeremy Irvine, Sam Reid, and Tanroh Ishida complete a stellar cast alongside the Academy Award-winning duo of Firth and Kidman.

Teplitzksy (Burning Man) is directing from a script written by Andy Paterson (Girl with a Earring) and Frank Cottrell Boyce (24 Hour Party People), based on Eric Lomax’s autobiography, The Railway Man: A POW’s Searing Account of War, Brutality and Forgivenes.

The Railway Man is set to be released in the UK and Ireland on 3rd January, 2014. No word yet on a US release date, but it wouldn’t be a surprise at all to see this get an awards-qualifying release in the States before the year’s end, quite possibly followed by a wider release in the New Year. For now, here’s the first trailer to help make the wait that little bit easier.