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Viola Davis is set to star in an upcoming HBO movie about the life of famous runaway slave an abolitionist Harriet Tubman. But, do we need another movie depicting blacks as slaves? Let’s discuss inside…

“How to Get Away with Murder” star Viola Davis will portray famous abolitionist Harriet Tubman, who was born Araminta Ross in the early 1800’s, in an upcoming HBO telefilm about the former slave’s life, as Deadline just announced. Harriet Tubman escaped from slavery in 1849 and came up with a plan to help hundreds of slaves to freedom via the Underground Railroad.

The biopic (which is currently be developed) will be based on the biography “Bound for the Promised Land: Harriet Tubman: Portrait of an American Hero” by historian Kate Clifford Larson.

Not only is the Oscar and Emmy nominee set to star in the lead role, she’s also executive producing the project with her husband Julius Tennon through their JuVee Productions, along with Amblin TV’s Justin Falvey and Darryl Frank, Ellin and Jim Lefkowitz of Halyard Park, and Cliff Dorfman. Amblin TV was also behind box office hit The Help that awarded Viola with an Oscar nomination for her role as a black maid named Aibileen Clark.

Which brings us to this…do we really need ANOTHER slave-era focused movie in 2015? Some people would say yes! There are some folks who applaud stories of slavery continuously being told. And when you attach an A-lister such as Viola to the project, it may get more attention and more eyes to see the film. And telling the story to the masses is the goal, right?

On the flip side, there are many who feel we do NOT need anymore of this. Questions are being posed on social media and beyond about why we are continuously seeing more movies about slavery and servitude. Some feel the influx of slave stories is actually a way to “control” the perception of blacks in this country. There indeed seems to be a trend, or is it just Hollywood being its usual ‘if it worked the first time, let’s not reinvent the wheel and keep recreating it’ self?

Why does Viola need to play a slave (even though she’s playing an abolitionist) when she has already played the poor negro on a few occasions? Especially when she’s getting so much acclaim and praise as a genius lawyer in the hit ABC series. Many are asking, Why are “they” constantly putting black A-listers who can play roles such as doctors and lawyers and inventors in roles of slaves?

Not to mention, Hollywood could care less about our history and ultimately is in the business of making money. And alot of it. The Butler, The Help, Django Unchained and 12 Years a Slave have made MILLIONS of dollars at the box office. Millions of dollars made off the portrayal of blacks as slaves. Do we need yet another? Is it necessary?


Photo: Getty

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