Liev Schreiber (Defiance, Salt) and Jaden Smith (The Pursuit of Happyness, After Earth) are set to star in a slavery film. Deadline is reporting that the two actors have signed on for The Good Lord Bird, an adaptation of the 2013 National Book Award winner by author James McBride (Miracle at St. Anna).
The Good Lord Bird tells the story of a young slave named Henry “Onion” Shackleford, to be played by Smith, who teams “with radical abolitionist John Brown (Schreiber) in 1856 Kansas and travels the nation with Brown’s motley crew of freedom fighters. Story is told with a satirical bent through the eyes of Onion, who wears a dress and is at first mistaken for a girl, as he bears witness to Brown’s historic campaign and encounters the likes of Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman en route to the bloody Harper’s Ferry raid that helped spark the Civil War.”
This certainly sounds like a promising film, with a role that should see young Smith attempt a more dramatic role.
The Good Lord Bird is to be produced by Schreiber and author McBride. No director has yet been named.
Schreiber will next be appearing in Pawn Sacrifice, Edward Zwick’s biopic starring Tobey Maguire as American chess champion Bobby Fischer, and Jaden Smith will be reprising his role as Dre Parker in The Karate Kid 2.