Viola Davis to Close Martha’s Vineyard African American Film Festival With Spotlight on ‘The Woman King’

Oscar winner Viola Davis will showcase her upcoming film The Woman King at the Martha’s Vineyard African American Film Festival.

The actress is to take place in a conversation about the Sony Pictures/TriStar movie on closing night, Aug. 13, as part of the festival’s signature event, Color of Conversation. During the conversation, Davis and moderator Jazmine Hughes of The New York Times will discuss the film and share clips from the movie.

The festival, co-founded by the husband-and-wife team of Floyd and Stephanie Rance in 2002, features content and conversations celebrating Black excellence over the course of nine days.

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“Stephanie and I are extremely proud of the platform we have created to celebrate projects from people of color in film,” said Floyd Rance. “To have this festival conclude with Viola Davis helping us celebrate 20 years of Black excellence, it doesn’t get better than this.”

Inspired by true events, The Woman King tells the story of the Agojie, the all-female unit of warriors who protected the African kingdom of Dahomey in the 1800s with fierce skills. The movie follows the journey of General Nanisca (Davis) as she trains the next generation of recruits and readies them for battle against an enemy determined to destroy their way of life.

The film was directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood, with a story by Maria Bello and Dana Stevens and screenplay by Stevens. In addition to Davis, the cast includes Thuso Mbedu, Lashana Lynch, Sheila Atim, Hero Fiennes Tiffin and John Boyega. It’s set to be released across the country Sept. 16.

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Davis and Bello also produced alongside Cathy Schulman and Julius Tennon. Peter McAleese serves as executive producer.

For more information on the MVAAFF and a complete schedule, go to

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