Viola Davis to exec produce Harriet Tubman HBO movie
JORDANNAH ELIZABETH | 5/29/2015, 5:32 p.m.
It has been reported that Tony Award winner and “How to Get Away with Murder” star Viola Davis has taken on an executive producer role with a new HBO film highlighting the life of Harriet Tubman.
Variety reports, “Davis is developing the project with Amblin TV and writer Kirk Ellis, who has penned historical projects for HBO, including its ‘John Adams’ miniseries, and ‘Entourage’ exec producer Doug Ellin. The untitled movie is based on the book “Bound for the Promised Land: Harriet Tubman: Portrait of an American Hero” by Kate Clifford Larson.
Davis is executive producing with her partner and husband, Julius Tennon; Amblin’s Justin Falvey and Darryl Frank; Ellin; Jim Lefkowitz; and Cliff Dorfman.
Tubman, a revolutionary African-American abolitionist and key builder of the Underground Railroad, has been in the news as of late after she won a poll conducted by a grassroots organization lobbying to put a woman on the $20 bill. She was chosen over Eleanor Roosevelt, Rosa Parks and other culture-shattering American women.
Before Tubman was able to create well-thought-out escape routes for other slaves, she herself managed to become a successful “runaway” slave, escaping her encapsulation on a plantation in 1849. She became a cook and nurse during the Civil War and created safe houses for other slaves. She was eventually entrusted to become a spy for the Union during the war and made history with her incredible bravery and tactics.
Davis is also responsible for producing “Besse,” the biopic starring Queen Latifah that premiered on HBO May 16.