It may have taken a few years and some change to put together, but now it looks as if TriStar’s long-awaited production of Woman King is getting some traction. With the casting of actress Viola Davis, Justin Kroll at Variety reports that Gina Prince-Bythewood will direct the female-fronted period actioner based on true events.
The film is a historical epic inspired by true events that took place in The Kingdom of Dahomey, one of the most powerful states of Africa in the 18th and 19th centuries. The story follows Nanisca (Davis), general of the all-female military unit, and her daughter Nawi, who together fought the French and neighboring tribes who violated their honor, enslaved their people and threatened to destroy everything they’ve lived for.
Prince-Bythewood, best known for helming The Secret Life Of Bees and Love & Basketball, is fresh off from the high reception of her new Netflix release, The Old Guard, starring Charlize Theron and Kiki Layne. Considering this, on top of the fact that Prince-Bythewood was previously tapped to helm one of Sony’s long-shelved Marvel projects, Silver & Black, the choice of director here seems more than reasonable.
Mario Bello crafted the original story for Woman King, and will produce via Jack Blue Productions next to Cathy Schulman of Welle Entertainment, and Viola Davis and Julius Tennon of JuVee Productions.