ABC’s limited series about the onset of the Civil Rights Movement has recast a major role. According to Deadline, Tonya Pinkins (Fear the Walking Dead, Madam Secretary) has joined the cast of Women of the Movement, replacing Niecy Nash (Uncorcked, Claws) who departed the project for personal reasons.
According to Deadline, Women of the Movement is a series based on the book Emmett Till: The Murder That Shocked the World and Propelled the Civil Rights Movement written by Devery S. Anderson (The Development of LDS Temple Worship, 1846-2000: A Documentary History, Salt Lake City School of the Prophets, 1867-1883). The book details the extraordinary sacrifice and works the late Mamie Till-Mobley did to find justice for her murdered son, Emmett. A Chicago native, Emmett was viciously beaten and drowned by a group of white men while visiting family in Mississippi. As the men were all acquitted of the crime, Till-Mobley famously demanded an open casket funeral to show the world what evil injustice had befallen her son. This moment is credited for jumpstarting America’s Civil Rights Movement.
According to Deadline, Pinkins will play Alma, the grandmother of Emmett. Alma is described as a strong woman who protected her family as her daughter Mamie traveled the country fighting for justice. Adrienne Warren (Bring It On: The Musical, Shuffle Along, or, the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed) is set to star in the lead role of Till-Mobley.
Series creator and writer, Marissa Jo Cerar (The Handmaid’s Tale, 13 Reasons Why) will serve as showrunner according to Deadline. She will also executive produce with several collaborators including Kaptial Entertainment’s Aaron Kaplan (The Neighbors, The Chi), Dana Honor (The Unicorn, Carol’s Second Act), and Michael Lohmann (Nashville, Guest Artist).
According to Deadline, Roc Nation is attached with Jay-Z (The Blueprint, Streets Is Watching), Jay Brown (Savage x Fenty Show), and Tyran Smith (State Property, Jay-Z: In My Lifetime) listed as executive producers. Will Smith (Focus, Gemini Man) and James Lassiter (Hitch, I Am Legend) are on board through Smith’s production company, Overbook.
The production crew is rounded out by Serendipity Film Group’s Gina Prince-Bythewood (The Old Gaurd, Love and Basketball) and Rosanna Grace; Alex Foster and John Powers Middleton (Extinction, Run All Night) of Middleton Media Group; and, David Clark with Mazo Partners via Deadline.
According to Deadline, the series begins filming this Monday in Mississippi. Lohmann will be on set to oversee day-to-day operations as the crew has built a quarantine bubble for safety. The first episode will be directed by Prince-Bythewood.