‘Birth of a Nation’ Snatched Up by Fox Searchlight

Nate Parker in The Birth of a Nation
Nate Parker in ‘The Birth of a Nation’ (Photo by Elliot Davis)

The Birth of a Nation, the most talked about film at the Sundance Film Festival, has found a home with Fox Searchlight. The film debuted to a standing ovation at Sundance and it’s quite possible writer/director/producer/actor Nate Parker could find himself very, very busy next awards season. Justin Chang from Variety describes it as a “biographical drama steeped equally in grace and horror” while Vanity Fair’s review says it’s “uneven but undeniably powerful.”

Fox Searchlight is aiming for a 2016 theatrical release.

The film stars Parker, Armie Hammer, Penelope Ann Miller, Jackie Earle Haley, Mark Boone Jr., Colman Domingo, Aunjanue Ellis, Dwight Henry, Aja Naomi King, Esther Scott, Roger Guenveur Smith and Gabrielle Union.

“From the moment we saw this film we knew we wanted to join Nate Parker in fulfilling his vision as the film’s portrayal of injustice is unfortunately still relevant today. His dedication and artistry in revitalizing Nat Turner’s legacy and place in history has resulted in an extraordinarily compelling and moving film that delivers on every level. The ensemble cast, led by Nate Parker, is committed and exceptional,” said Fox Searchlight Pictures Presidents Nancy Utley and Stephen Gilula.

“It brings me immense joy and excitement to welcome the Searchlight team into our family. I embrace their shared passion for this film and its potential impact on our country and the world,” commented Nate Parker.

The Birth of a Nation Plot:

Set against the antebellum South, The Birth of a Nation follows Nat Turner, a literate slave and preacher, whose financially strained owner, Samuel Turner, accepts an offer to use Nat’s preaching to subdue unruly slaves. As he witnesses countless atrocities – against himself and his fellow slaves – Nat orchestrates an uprising in the hopes of leading his people to freedom.