Universal Pictures Home Entertainment has picked up the U.S. rights to Emperor, the feature based on the harrowing journey of American freedom fighter Shields Green, played by Dayo Okeniyi (Shades of Blue). Oscar nominee James Cromwell (The Green Mile) co-stars along with Kat Graham (The Vampire Diaries), Naturi Naughton (Power), Mykelti Williamson (Fences), Ben Robson (The Boy) and Oscar nominee Bruce Dern (Once Upon a Time…In Hollywood).
Mark Amin directed the pic, which was originally slated for a limited theatrical release in March via Briarcliff Entertainment but was halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It’ll be released on digital, DVD and on-demand on August 18.
Set in the pre-Civil War South, the film details Green’s escape from slavery and his transformation into one of America’s greatest heroes. Seeking freedom for his family, Emperor fights his way north, joining the daring raid on Harper’s Ferry, the key battle of the abolitionist movement which helped spark the beginning of the Civil War and alter the course of American history.
Amin co-wrote the screenplay with Pat Charles. Django Unchained producer Reginald Hudlin produced the pic along with Amin and Cami Winikoff