David Oyelowo To Play Rev. King in Lee Daniels’ Selma

Published 4 years ago by , Updated February 10th, 2012 at 9:42 am,

david oyelowo selma cast David Oyelowo To Play Rev. King in Lee Daniels Selma

Fresh off a Best Director Oscar nomination for Precious, Lee Daniels is gearing up for his third project, Selma. After casting Hugh Jackman as a racist sheriff, Daniels went low key for his leading man. Relatively unknown British actor David Oyelowo will portray civil rights leader, Martin Luther King, Jr. You may recognize Oyelowo as Dr. Junju from The Last King of Scotland, but otherwise his profile has been small. Soon, you’ll know the name better when he stars in George Lucas’ upcoming Tuskegee Airman ensemble piece Red Tails.

This is probably for the better, and we’ve seen what Daniels can do with unproven actors. The Oscar-nominated performance given by Gabourey Sidibe in Precious is one of Hollywood’s greatest stories in recent memory, and no doubt is partly attributed to Daniels’ directing ability.

Daniels has tackled some heavy subject matter in only two films, Shadowboxer (death) and Precious (abuse). Now, he will go after one of the most important of the 20th century; civil rights. The story revolves around Martin Luther King, Jr.’s historic marches through Selma, Alabama in 1965, but is not a biopic. It is a depiction of events, not a public figure. The events themselves merit a focused storyline, considering the horrendous results now known as “Bloody Sunday.”

selma2 570x379 David Oyelowo To Play Rev. King in Lee Daniels Selma

The Hollywood Reporter says funding for this project is going through some snags. But when that happened on Precious, Daniels found a way to pull through with a well-crafted film. It wouldn’t hurt to get Tyler Perry and Oprah involved again, at least financially.

“Pathe International was on board to finance but might be scaling back its involvement, the extent of which was not immediately clear. It is known that the project is being shopped around in the hope of raising funds.”

It’s all kind of strange considering the film’s importance, Hugh Jackman’s involvement, and the success of Precious. On the other hand, Daniels is still a newbie and the film’s writer, Paul Webb, has literally nothing to show. Not to mention the scary subject matter and violence involved. Either way, this movie needs to be made and the story must be told.

Selma does not yet have a release date, and Alabama Governor George Wallace has yet to be cast. How do you feel about the casting of a smaller name? Is there anybody you think would have made a great Martin Luther King, Jr.?

Water Cooler Trivia: Mo’Nique played a character named Precious in Lee Daniels’ directorial debut, Shadowboxer. She also won an Oscar for her performance as the mother of a character named Precious in Daniels’ Precious.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

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7 Comments

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  1. Check out David Oyelowo in the BBC show “Spooks”(aka-MI-5). The first three seasons is some of the best television of the last 20 years. Definitely worth the watch.

  2. Singer Keith Washington has features of Dr.King, the height and has been doing plays recently so the acting experience is there. Before casting this guy who looks more like singer Anthony Hamilton than Dr.King, Keith Washington should be considered for the role.

  3. A better actor for King? Sure, Derek Luke from Trauma but this young actor still fits the bill. I think they should get Gary Sinise to play Wallace. And you are right, this should be told and some of Hollywoods greats should be lining up to finance it (Denzel, Oprah, Spike Lee, Tyler Perry, etc…).

  4. A better actor for King? Sure, Derek Luke from Trauma but this young actor still fits the bill. I think they should get Gary Sinise to play Wallace. And you are right, this should be told and some of Hollywoods greats should be lining up to finance it (Denzel, Oprah, Spike Lee, Tyler Perry, etc…).

  5. there is no better actor to play King. being a relative unknown allows the audience to more quickly “see” King and not be distracted by the actor. David Oyelowo is an extremely talented actor. i can't wait to see what he brings to the role.

  6. Keith Washington?! LOL!! He is entirely too old to play the role. He's 50!! King was 39 when he died.

  7. I was so bless to see you are coming out with the play Selma again. I saw the play in Detroit years ago, and it touched my heart so strongly I know the play by hard. I know God is going to bring it back out for people to see, because just this morning God placed it on my heart to contact Tyler Perry to see if he can help bring it out. I dont have contact with will him, but God can do anything. I will pray to God that he place it on Tyler’s heart. It is a blessing how this info. came to me.

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