EXCLUSIVE: Coming off excellent reviews in Studio 8/Sony’s White Boy Rick, Jonathan Majors is in talks to portray Bobby Seale, the co-founder of the Black Panther Party, in Aaron Sorkin’s Amblin Entertainment feature The Trial of the Chicago 7.
Sorkin’s Chicago 7, which the Oscar winner is writing and directing, follows the infamous 1969 trial of seven defendants charged by the federal government with conspiracy and more, arising from the counterculture protests in Chicago at the 1968 Democratic National Convention. The trial transfixed the nation and sparked a conversation about mayhem intended to undermine the U.S. government. Marc Platt is producing.
Seale was far and beyond the worst-treated defendant; he was refused a legal representative and bound and gagged during the hearing. He was given a mistrial and was separated from the other seven after being bound in front of the gallery and jury.
Majors joins Sacha Baron Cohen and Eddie Redmayne in The Trial of the Chicago 7. They will play activists Abbie Hoffman and Tom Hayden, respectively.
Majors is a Yale School of Drama graduate with an MFA in acting. He was the recipient of the Lloyd Richards Scholarship and the Jerome L. Green Scholarship and the winner of the 2015 National Society of Arts and Letters National Drama Competition. He made his TV debut in February 2017 starring in the ABC miniseries When We Rise, which was followed up by turns in Scott Cooper’s Western Hostiles and as Johnny ‘Lil Man’ Curry, a Detroit underworld confidante of young Rick Wershe Jr’s, in Yann Demange’s White Boy Rick which starred Matthew McConaughey and Jennifer Jason Leigh.
Majors will next lead opposite Jurnee Smollett-Bell in HBO’s straight-to-series drama Lovecraft Country created by Jordan Peele. The series will follow Majors’ character as he road trips across 1950s Jim Crow America. Upcoming projects also include Max Winkler’s Jungleland co-starring Charlie Hunnam, Jack O’Connell and Jessica Barden.
Majors also recently wrapped production on the Rupert Wyatt-directed sci-fi film Captive State which is set for release in March 2019. His first lead role was in A24’s Last Black Man in San Francisco, and other projects include Nabil Elderkin’s Gully in which he starred alongside Amber Heard, Charlie Plummer and Terrance Howard, as well as the BBC film Out of Blue starring Patricia Clarkson.
Majors is repped by CAA, Grandview Management, the Lede Company and Jackoway Austen.