All hail the Woman King!
The Woman King reigned supreme at the box office with an impressive $19 million debut that toppled expectations while garnering nearly universal praise across the internet and beyond.
“We started intensely a few months before shooting—four hours a day, five days a week,” said Davis in an interview with Vanity Fair. Weight training, sprinting, martial arts, and weaponry training for the machete. I like to say that I was the OG warrior. [Laughs.]
I’ve never had a role like this before. It’s transformative. And to be a producer on it, and to know that I had a hand in bringing it to fruition…. There’s always a vision you have for your career, but there are very few roles as an actress of color. Dark skin with a wide nose and big lips. I’m just gonna continue to say it. Those stories are extraordinarily limited.”
Standing on the shoulders of an incredible ensemble cast lead by Viola Davis, Lashana Lynch, and John Boyega, the Oscar-worthy film overcame boycott backlash over its ‘historically inaccurate’ portrayal of the Agojie–an elite all-woman warrior squad in the West African Kingdom of Dahomey.
Fueled by critics of the film’s ‘revisionist history,’ #BoycottTheWomanKing trended across social media as the film received critical acclaim.
“I learned early on you cannot win an argument on Twitter,” said Director Gina Prince-Bythewood in response to the backlash. “And I know all of that is going to go away once they see the film. There’s an assumption we’re not dealing with it and we are dealing with it. So I have to live in that confidence. They’re going to see the film and they’re going to see it.”
Written by Dana Stevens and based on a story by Maria Bello and Stevens, the film does address the Agojie’s role in the slave trade without delving deeply into the Dahomey tribe’s treacherous history.
Originally slated to star in the film (before being replaced by Lashana Lynch), Lupita Nyong’o cried upon learning the history of the Agojie during BBC’s ‘Warrior Women’ documentary.
Whether you agree or disagree with the backlash, two things are true: the film is spectacular with a Hollywood storyline inspired by true-ish events.
Did you see the film? If so, did you love it? If not, WHY? Tell us down below and peep some Twitter hysteria over the film on the flip.