For the second year in a row, a major studio will release a slave drama around the Christmas Holiday. Director Steve McQueen’s historical epic, 12 Years A Slave will hit theaters on December 27, 2013.
Fox Searchlight will distribute McQueen’s follow-up based on the autobiography Twelve Years a Slave by Solomon Northup, a free black man who was kidnapped in Washington D.C in 1841 and sold into slavery. He worked on plantations in the state of Louisiana for 12 years before his release.
Written by McQueen and John Ridley (Red Tails), the film will star Chiwetel Ejiofor as Solomon Northup, Michael Fassbender and Brad Pitt. The film will also feature an array of supporting actors including Ruth Negga, Adepero Oduye, Alfre Woodard, Lupita Nyong’o, Paul Dano, Benedict Cumberbatch, Scoot McNairy, Garret Dillahunt, Michael K. Williams, Paul Giamatti, Sarah Paulson and others.
The film’s release automatically makes it a major awards player even before many of the voters have had a chance to see the film. McQueen’s pedigree with Shame, coupled with the film’s subject matter and cast may prove to be a combination that is hard to beat. Fox Searchlight hopes that this film can duplicate the success of the last year’s slavery drama, Quentin Tarantino’s Oscar-nominated film, Django Unchained.
As they say, “We will see!”