Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Why Aren’t We Talking About the Sexual Assault in 'Beyond the Lights'? Why Aren’t We Talking About the Sexual Assault in 'Beyond the Lights'? Page to Screen Possibilities for Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's 'Americanah' (Lupita Nyong'o, David Oyelowo Starring) Page to Screen Possibilities for Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's 'Americanah' (Lupita Nyong'o, David Oyelowo Starring) David Oyelowo Joins Lupita Nyong’o in 'Americanah' Film Adaptation David Oyelowo Joins Lupita Nyong’o in 'Americanah' Film Adaptation Leaked Sony Emails Reveal Interest in Destiny's Child Biopic + Immersive Kanye West Feature Film Experience Leaked Sony Emails Reveal Interest in Destiny's Child Biopic + Immersive Kanye West Feature Film Experience Weekend B.O. Dec. 12-14 (So How’s That Boycott Working for Ya?) Weekend B.O. Dec. 12-14 (So How’s That Boycott Working for Ya?) FX Orders Comedy Pilot on Atlanta Hip-Hop Scene From & Starring Donald Glover FX Orders Comedy Pilot on Atlanta Hip-Hop Scene From & Starring Donald Glover Chadwick Boseman, David Oyelowo, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Rosario Dawson, Others Share Kisses in NY Times Shorts Chadwick Boseman, David Oyelowo, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Rosario Dawson, Others Share Kisses in NY Times Shorts What Sony Pictures Chief Amy Pascal Should Do if She Sincerely Wants to Make Amends What Sony Pictures Chief Amy Pascal Should Do if She Sincerely Wants to Make Amends Here's the Character John Boyega Plays in 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' Here's the Character John Boyega Plays in 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' Watch Zendaya, Kadeem Hardison, Tammy Townsend in Trailer for 'K.C. Undercover' Watch Zendaya, Kadeem Hardison, Tammy Townsend in Trailer for 'K.C. Undercover' Ava DuVernay Earns Her Way Into the History Books - First Black Woman Director to Be Nominated for a Golden Globe Award Ava DuVernay Earns Her Way Into the History Books - First Black Woman Director to Be Nominated for a Golden Globe Award Beyond The Lights, Beyond The Urban Narrative: When Marketing Gets In The Way of Story Beyond The Lights, Beyond The Urban Narrative: When Marketing Gets In The Way of Story Woody Allen Says He Won’t Hire a Black Actor Unless the Role Calls for One... Whatever That Means Woody Allen Says He Won’t Hire a Black Actor Unless the Role Calls for One... Whatever That Means Will You Join The Boycott 'Exodus' Movement? (Or You Don't Care) Will You Join The Boycott 'Exodus' Movement? (Or You Don't Care) Co-Screenwriter of 'Noah' Explains Why There Are No Black People Or POC In The Film Co-Screenwriter of 'Noah' Explains Why There Are No Black People Or POC In The Film Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Lifetime Launches New Series Set In Elite World Of Hip-Hop Majorette Competitions (Watch Preview) Lifetime Launches New Series Set In Elite World Of Hip-Hop Majorette Competitions (Watch Preview) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Will Smith Explains Why Willow Smith Dropped Out Of 'Annie' Remake Will Smith Explains Why Willow Smith Dropped Out Of 'Annie' Remake Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie... Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie...

Alfre Woodard, Lupita Nyong'o Join Cast Of Steve McQueen's '12 Years A Slave' (We Have Our Patsey!)

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act June 11, 2012 at 4:53PM

Boy... the cast of Steve McQueen's 12 Years A Slave continues to impress! Even if I had absolutely no idea what the project was about, with this cast, and director, I would definitely be interested to see whatever it was they were cooking up.
76
Alfre Woodard Lupita

Boy... the cast of Steve McQueen's 12 Years A Slave continues to impress! Even if I had absolutely no idea what the project was about, with this cast, and director, I would definitely be interested to see whatever it was they were cooking up.

Alfre Woodard will join a cast that already includes Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael FassbenderRuth Negga, Adepero OduyePaul DanoBenedict Cumberbatch, Scoot McNairyGarret Dillahunt, Brad Pitt Paul Giamatti and Sarah Paulson.

Woodard will play Mistress Shaw, a former slave who climbes the Southern caste system. I read the book, but I don't immediately recall that character; and skimming through Vanessa's review of the actual script, there is no mention of a Mistress Shaw either. So I'm guessing it's likely a relatively *minor* role. Although I'll have to flip through the pages of the book again to see where exactly she's mentioned.

Maybe Vanessa remembers and can add to this in the comments section.

Also joining the cast is newcomer Lupita Nyong'o, who will reportedly play "a slave who is the object of both the affections and cruelty of Master Epps (Fassbender)," says The Hollywood Reporter. And I believe that answers another major question we've had about the project - and that is, who will play the role of Patsey.

We speculated that Adepero Oduye would play that role after it was announced that she'd been cast in the film; but it looks like Lupita will play Patsey.

Why do I think this character as described is indeed Patsey? Well, as I said in my book-to-film reportPatsey's story is a sad, sad one. She's considered the best cotton picker of Epps' slaves, and is also his mistress, although certainly not because she wants to be. Epps is married, and his wife is aware of his infidelities with Patsey, and for that reason, she routinely orders Patsey whipped. She hates Patsey, and of course blames her for Epps' indiscretions, even though she doesn't exactly have any say in the matter. So Patsey is forced to sleep with Epps, facing his wrath if she doesn't; but if she does sleep with him, she faces Epps' wife's wrath. There's a scene in which Patsey is whipped by Epps so cruelly that I felt it just from reading Northup's words as he described the scene. I don't know how McQueen will shoot that particular sequence, but it'll be incredibly painful to watch. If you don't already hate Epps by then (and really, given everything else he does prior, you should), this will most certainly do it.

So, with a description that reads "a slave who is the object of both the affections and cruelty of Master Epps," Patsey is really the only slave woman who fits that description.

Looking over Lupita's IMDB page (she's originally from Kenya by the way), she's actually primarily a filmmaker, and has done some crew work on other projects. But little in the acting department. Although on her Twitter page, which I found via Google search, she lists herself as an actor first, and says that she is a Yale School of Drama graduate!

But I'll do some further digging to see what more I can learn about her, and will report my findings here.

As I said in a previous post, Patsey's is a meaty role, and she'll certainly chew up quite a bit of screen time. So this could certainly be a showcase for Lupita's talents.


Shadow & ActNewsletter