TriStar Pictures has acquired worldwide rights to The Woman King, a film inspired by true events that will star Oscar winners Viola Davis and Lupita Nyong’o. The original story is from Maria Bello, and Cathy Schulman’s Welle Entertainment will produce with Davis and Julius Tennon of JuVee Productions, and Bello of Jack Blue Productions.
Based on the true events that took place in The Kingdom of Dahomey, one of the most powerful West African states in the 18th and 19th centuries, The Woman King tells the story of Nanisca (Davis), general of the all-female military unit known as the Amazons, and her daughter Nawi (Nyong’o), who together fought the French and neighboring tribes who violated their honor, enslaved their people, and threatened to destroy everything they’ve lived for.
“The Woman King is the powerful true story of an extraordinary mother-daughter relationship,” TriStar Pictures president Hannah Minghella said. “And there’s no-one more extraordinary than Viola Davis and Lupita Nyong’o to bring them to life.”
Added Schulman: “Black Panther just showed us how the power of imagination and lore could reveal a world without gender and racial stereotypes. The Woman King will tell one of history’s greatest forgotten stories from the real world in which we live, where an army of African warrior women staved off slavery, colonialism and inter-tribal warfare to unify a nation.”
Minghella and Nicole Brown will oversee the project for TriStar Pictures.