julie dash to direct angela davis biopic

January 28, 2019
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The story of the Black woman hero is not common in fiction, but it is forever relevant and recreated in reality. The Black woman has always been positioned as the savior in the American public imagination: from Harriet Tubman to Rosa Parks to Shirley Chisholm. There’s a plethora of examples of Black women taking up the space as both the brave and the morally superior, crafting a hero narrative that is slightly more glamorous than the mammy trope but just as much about the idea that Black women find delight, purpose even, in protecting and nurturing the American project and its many theories.

This is the reason why the news of Julie Dash directing Angela Davis’ biopic delights me because of the opportunity that the story of a Black female hero can happen through a conversation with another Black woman. It can dodge the pathologies and tropes that intertwine the servitude and the deification of the Black woman, which will only insist in her further dehumanization, and get to a real human story. A story that positions her bravery and boldness as a human characteristics, not characteristics born out of a space of exceptionalism.

Brian Tucker is writing the screenplay and Sidra Smith is producing the project, and filming starts in June, and my anticipation for the project can hardly be contained.