The story of Miriam Makeba, one of the most important voices in South Africa’s transformation from apartheid to the presidency of Nelson Mandela, is being turned into a feature film by Suzanne de Passe (Lady Sings The Blues) and Madison Jones of de Passe Jones Entertainment. Also producing is Broadway producer Willette Klausner, music producer David Franco and Makeba’s former publicist and confidant Marc Le Chat.
Makeba was Africa’s first Grammy winner, she recorded and performed songs in English, Portuguese, Hebrew and Swahili and worked the likes of Harry Belafonte, Dizzy Gillespie, Nina Simone, Odetta, Hugh Masekela and Paul Simon. A vocal opponent of apartheid, the government revoked her passport in 1960 and her citizenship in 1963. She didn’t return to South Africa until 1990. She died in 2008 at age 76.
The movie will be developed in collaboration with the Miriam Makeba Estate, Miriam Makeba Foundation and Mama Africa Cultural & Social Trust.