This is a surprise!
DreamWorks initially acquired the life rights of the civil rights leader in May 2009, with Sam Nappi, Suzanne de Passe and Madison Jones on board as producers. The project has the full support of the King estate, as noted, unlike other MLK projects, with Dexter King, Bernice King and Martin Luther King II executive producing.
The still untitled DreamWorks/Warners biopic now boasts Oliver Stone as director of the film, with Jamie Foxx starring as Martin Luther King Jr. – a move that will hopefully speed up the process, given how much time has already passed since the project was first announced.
As for plot, the story will follow MLK from his rise to civil rights leader, all the way to his assassination in 1968.
This is one of at least 4 MLK projects that have been at some stage of development over the last 4 years, since this site was founded. The highest profile of them (and most likely to see completion) being: Paul Greengrass’s Memphis, which we learned most recently that Forest Whitaker will star in; Lee Daniels was replaced by Ava DuVernay on Selma, with David Oyelowo attached to star; And, of course this Dreamworks/WB project, which now has Oliver Stone and Jamie Foxx attached – two actors who certainly aren’t strangers to films based on real-life historical figures.
It’s been quite a biopic-announcement-heavy year hasn’t it? With Foxx starring and Stone directing, this could present another Best Actor Oscar nomination (or even win) for the actor.