For years now, Viola Davis has been a display powerhouse – an Oscar-winning titan whose performances within the likes of Fences, Widows, and Ma Rainey’s Black Backside have made her one of the revered actors round. Now she’s stepping as much as convey her “magnum opus” to the display each as star and producer – prepare for The Girl King, an action-packed historic epic in regards to the Agojie, or Dahomey Amazons, an all-female Black navy drive who existed in West Africa within the 1800s. Their story is one Davis has lengthy wished to inform – and with director Gina Prince-Bythewood on board they’re doing simply that, with Davis starring as Agojie Basic Nanisca.
Presenting this story of Black girls warriors is just not solely providing cinemagoers a slice of untold historical past, however is a press release of intent to inform have a good time a bunch in society who’re far too typically marginalised or rendered invisible. “This film is my response to that,” Davis tells Empire within the new Home Of The Dragon concern. “This film is just not even my respectful response to that. It’s an illustration of the insurmountable magnificence, energy, vulnerability, femininity, and absolute energy of the dark-skinned Black girl. It’s our means of redefining who we’re. And I imagine from the primary second you enter this film, you will note that in a really lovely means.”
Taking up the position of Nanisca – who leads warriors together with Lashana Lynch’s Lieutenant Igozie, Sheila Atim’s Lieutenant Amenza and Thuso Mbedu’s new recruit Nawi – was one thing that required appreciable energy from Davis, and never simply bodily. “I feel it’s very onerous to coach a bunch of younger girls to suck up their vulnerability with the intention to struggle,” she explains. “To dig deep and discover that warrior spirit that understands it’s important to struggle for one thing larger than your self – and that it could price you your life. That was tough for me.” However for all that the Agojie are a formidable preventing drive, The Girl King is simply as a lot about depicting their roundedness as individuals. “We wished to point out these girls as entire girls,” says Prince-Bythewood. “Their vulnerability was as necessary as their fierceness, and so they had an unbelievable sisterhood.” Prepare for a historic battle film in contrast to any you’ve seen earlier than.
Learn Empire’s full The Girl King function within the upcoming Home Of The Dragon concern – on sale Thursday 4 August and accessible to pre-order on-line right here. The Girl King involves UK cinemas from 4 October.