Spike Lee is once again bringing a one-man stage show by Roger Guenveur Smith to the big screen, this time, to tell the story of the late social reformer, abolitionist, orator and writer, Frederick Douglass.
In the latest collaboration between Lee and Smith, whose relationship expands through three decades, the legendary director is set to direct the movie adaptation of Smith’s “Frederick Douglass Now,” highlighting the life and accomplishments of “one of the most extraordinary figures in U.S. History.”
According to Variety, the film is set to be produced by Buffalo 8, who worked with Luna Ray Media to produce Lee’s movie adaptation of Smith’s “Rodney King” one-man show.
In ”Frederick Douglass Now”, which is set in a spoken word format, Smith begins rapping a ”mashup of references to slavery and contemporary life in the U.S., ” before he continues with excerpts of Douglass’ essays and letters, and ends the piece with his own writing, “If there is no progress, Frederick Douglass is still alive.”
For Lee’s movie adaptation, according to the publication, jazz artist Branford Marsalis will play the film, alongside Smith’s longtime collaborator and composer for “Rodney King and “A Huey P. Newton Story,” Marc Anthony Thompson.