CodeBlack Films, a division of Lionsgate and CodeBlack Entertainment — the first independent, vertically integrated African-American-owned film studio — is developing a biopic film about renowned activist and Civil Rights leader Angela Davis. The studio has obtained movie rights to Angela Davis: An Autobiography, first published in 1974.
According to Variety, the as-yet-untitled movie will be produced by Nina Yang Bongiovi, who worked on Fruitvale Station and Dope. Davis will executive produce the film alongside her niece, Eisa Davis, who is also writing the script. Eisa was a Pulitzer Prize drama finalist for her play, Bulrusher, and writer and star of the play Angela’s Mixtape.
Davis was an assistant professor of UCLA’s philosophy department in the 1960s before being dismissed due to her political affiliation with the US Communist party. She was later charged with murder, kidnapping, and conspiracy in the wake of the Marin County Courthouse shootout in 1970. In 1972, she was acquitted.
In 2014, Davis returned to UCLA, who defended her right to teach at the institution when she was first urged to leave (NBC Los Angeles). “I never in my wildest imagination would have thought accepting the position here at UCLA would have led to that kind of notoriety,” said Davis. “I wasn’t seeking notoriety. I just wanted to be a teacher and an activist.”
Davis has also published several books, including Women, Race, and Class (1983), Are Prisons Obsolete? (2003), and Freedom is a Constant Struggle (2015).