By Lauren Victoria Burke, NNPA Newswire Contributor
A movie preview for the upcoming biopic featuring the life of legendary abolitionist Harriet Tubman, entitled “Harriet,” was viewed by over ten million people in five days from July 21 to July 26 on Facebook. Another social media post of the same movie trailer on YouTube received over four million views. The movie will be released on November 1.
The film stars British actress Cynthia Erivo as Harriet Tubman and Janelle Monae, Joe Alwyn and Leslie Odom.
“Based on the thrilling and inspirational life of an iconic American freedom fighter, “Harriet” tells the extraordinary tale of Harriet Tubman’s escape from slavery and transformation into one of America’s greatest heroes. Her courage, ingenuity, and tenacity freed hundreds of slaves and changed the course of history,” a write-up by Focus Features read.
The world premiere for “Harriet” will take place at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2019.
Originally Viola Davis was set to star in and produce a film on Tubman but the development of the current film by Focus began in May 2016. In February 2017, Cynthia Erivo was cast as Harriet Tubman and Seith Mann, who is African American, was selected as the director using a screenplay by Gregory Allen Howard.
Harriet Tubman was born Araminta Ross in March 1822 and died on March 10, 1913. She was an abolitionist, activist and a spy for the Union Army during the Civil War. Tubman escaped slavery and traveled thirteen missions to rescue over 300 enslaved people, many family and friends. Tubman used a network of antislavery activists and safe houses to bring people to freedom. The vast network would become known as the Underground Railroad.