Last March Lionsgate (Tyler Perry’s home studio) announced that it has acquired the rights to the classic Ntozake Shange’s play For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf. It also announced that Nzingha Stewart was going to be directing the film from her script adaptation.
Last week brought news that Perry has taken over the project as the writer and director. Lionsgate re-announced the acquisition of the project this time as the first vehicle for Perry’s production company 34th Street Films which is housed at Lionsgate. Film starts shooting in November with an all-star cast (none of the actors were named.)
Here’s what Perry had to say:
Making a film of FOR COLORED GIRLS WHO HAVE CONSIDERED SUICIDE WHEN THE RAINBOW IS ENUF is a dream come true for me. Ntozake Shange’s play is a magnificent tribute to the strength and dignity of women of color, and I think audiences of all generations will be able to recognize and embrace the experiences these women represent. Creatively, this movie is one of the most exciting undertakings of my career, and I’m excited to start production this November.
Sigh. On the one hand I’m really glad that this film is now on the fast track Perry can clearly generate audiences for his work and hopefully people will come out and see this film too. But let’s note, that an African American female director was announced for this film 6 months ago, and that can’t be ignored. I know that directors get replaced all the time but to send out a press release on September 2 as if the announcement from March 25th didn’t exist just doesn’t fly. They could have at least acknowledged that she had been involved with the project. We have so few women directors, and fewer African American women directors, that Stewart’s loss of this project is worth noting.
Lionsgate Acquires Suicide (Variety)