Film / TV
barry jenkins’ ‘underground railroad’ selects lead actors
By Erin White
April 17, 2019
So pleased to get more work for Moonlight director Barry Jenkins, this time in the form of his Amazon series The Underground Railroad, an adaption of Colson Whitehead’s award-winning novel of the same name. And the much-anticipated series has finally landed its lead actors, Thuso Mbedu, Chase W. Dillon and Aaron Pierre who will play Cora, Homer, and Caesar.
The story follows a young slave’s “adventures” as she makes her bid at freedom in the antebellum South. For the series, Jenkins will be teaming up with Brad Pitt’s Plan B and Adele Romanski, again, who co-produced Moonlight.
“Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. Life is hell for all the slaves, but especially bad for Cora; an outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is coming into womanhood — where even greater pain awaits. When Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her about the Underground Railroad, they decide to take a terrifying risk and escape. Matters do not go as planned — Cora kills a young white boy who tries to capture her. Though they manage to find a station and head north, they are being hunted. Cora and Caesar’s first stop is South Carolina, in a city that initially seems like a haven. But the city’s placid surface masks an insidious scheme designed for its Black denizens. And even worse: Ridgeway, the relentless slave catcher, is close on their heels. Forced to flee again, Cora embarks on a harrowing flight, state by state, seeking true freedom. Like the protagonist of Gulliver’s Travels, Cora encounters different worlds at each stage of her journey — hers is an odyssey through time as well as space.”
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