Film & TV

Gina Prince-Bythewood To Direct African Historical Epic Film ‘Woman King’ Starring Viola Davis

Gina Prince-Bythewood (Love & Basketball, The Secret Life of Bees, Old Guard), is set to direct the upcoming period action drama The Woman King for Sony’s TriStar. 

Influenced by true events, the historical movie is set in the Kingdom of Dahomey, one of the most paramount states of Africa during the 18th and 19th centuries. The Woman King centers on Nanisca, played by Viola Davis, who is the general of the female-based military unit known as the Amazons, and her daughter Nawi, who together battle the French and adjoining tribes who disobeyed their honor, enslaved their people, and threatened to annihilate everything they’ve lived for. 

Cathay Schulman will produce, along with Viola Davis and her husband Julius Tennon under their company JuVee Productions. “We at JuVee are beyond excited to introduce this incredible story of the Women Warriors of The Dahomey Ahosi tribe to the world. It’s time that they truly occupy their place in history and in Gina Prince-Bythewood’s hands, it will be a gamechanger. This project could not be a more perfect example of our legacy,” Davis told Variety, who first broke the news.

Women warriors parade
Women warriors parade outside the gates of a Dahomean town, with the severed heads of their defeated foes adorning the walls. (Public Domain)

To delve into the known history of Dahomean’s women warriors, visit the Smithsonian Magazine for an in-depth examination.

Ayanna Nicole

Hi! I’m Ayanna, a 26-year-old writer and artist. Although I graduated from The University of North Carolina at Charlotte with two degrees in art and psychology, I’ve had a passion for writing for as long as I can remember. By following my dreams and utilizing my creativity, I designed Jaro Magazine with the ultimate intention of bringing more positive stories in the black community to the forefront, while also highlighting our versatile and vibrant culture through Jaro’s four modes: film, books, art, and music. I’m into spirituality, nature walks, music festivals, poetry, traveling without a destination in mind, painting, and discussing everything out of the ordinary with other curious minds. Also, I'm an INFP!

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