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Terrence Howard, Sanaa Lathan And Harry Lennix To Topline Caribbean Set Version of Shakespeare's 'Macbeth'

by Sergio
March 3, 2013 9:32 AM
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Terrence Howard, Sanaa Lathan and Harry Lennix are all set to star in a new film version of William Shakespeare's Macbeth, set to start pre-production in Sept. 2013 on location in Jamaica and Puerto Rico.

The film, to be titled Macbett, will also star Blair Underwood and Evan Ross and is written and directed by Aleta Chappelle, who is the first Amercan-American woman to direct a film version of a Shakespeare play.

Howard not only plays the lead in the film, but is also the executive producer, along with producers Re'Shaun Frear and Kip Konwiser. 

As the filmmakers describe their new take on the play: "after a gallant military victory, General Macbett (Howard) encounters the “Weird Sisters,” who are the spirit daughters of Mother Africa and reign over fire, water, earth and sky. They delight in manipulating Macbett by feeding him predictions of royal titles including “King.” Macbett soon becomes obsessed with ambition, as does his beautiful and ruthless wife Lady Macbett (Lathan) .

"As Macbett and his Lady spiral downward, indulging in treachery and political assassinations, they are soon haunted by their murderous deeds and driven mad. In a true exemplification of a tragedy, Macbett is defeated by his own zealous thirst for power, a heartbreaking end to a once beloved Hero".

Though this is the first film of a black version of Macbeth, it is not the first time this has been done. Back in the 1936 Orson Welles, a few years before he directed his film Citizen Kane, directed a black stage version in New York set in Haiti, called Voodoo Macbeth which caused a sensation back in its day.

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  • Chrissy | March 29, 2014 5:52 PMReply

    So is this the exact play of 'Macbeth' as Shakespeare has written it? Or is it a remake with subpoints? Because if it's the former, why rename it Macbett?

  • sandra | March 8, 2013 2:09 PMReply

    Been hearing about this movie being set for pre-production since 2006.

  • Donella | March 4, 2013 11:56 AMReply

    I shall watch this! All the leads are excellent and never half-step a performance. Looking forward to it.

  • JEFTCG | March 4, 2013 4:27 AMReply

    Aleta, you are great, but trust me: if you want this to be a good movie, don't use Sanaa. There's a reason she's available.

  • forces1 | March 6, 2013 7:20 AM

    JEFTCG ,What you got against Sanaa?

  • PK | March 4, 2013 4:58 PM

    Sanaa did great in the Broadway play "Meet Vera Sparks" and on the television series "Boss" . I think she's capable

  • urbanauteur | March 4, 2013 1:34 PM

    OK how about KHANDI ALEXANDER or ERIKA ALEXANDER as Lady Macbett? and the BEST VERSION IMHO is director-Roman Polanski 1971 interpetation,i like his version over Akira Kurasawa & Orsen Welles.

  • guest2 | March 3, 2013 6:15 PMReply

    Are they supposed to be Jamaican? If so, will their be phony accents? Please no!

  • ALM | March 3, 2013 5:42 PMReply

    Finally! This project has been in the works for a minute.

  • Jules | March 3, 2013 7:51 PM

    Is Aleta Chappelle still directing? Met her....interesting woman.

  • AccidentalVisitor | March 3, 2013 5:59 PM

    Which is why I remain skeptical. This film has been talked about being made for four years and it never happens.

  • CareyCarey | March 3, 2013 11:45 AMReply

    This post inspired immediate questions, some of which I answered myself. First, can "they" act? YES, everyone associated with project has proven they can bring it (if given the right material). And I don't say that lightly. There's not a flaw in this cast.

    Next, is this a good story? Done deal, this is a great story.

    Who is the director and what is she bringing to the table? Well, I had to do a little digging.

    It appears she planted her seeds as a casting director. Who knew she dipped her feet in the waters of memorable films like Boomerang, The Godfather Part III, In Living Color (several episodes), Mooz-Lum, A Rage In Harlem, Drumline, Beverly Hills Cop II and many many others. So it's safe to say she KNOWS actors and their abilities. But the begging question (in my mind) is... can she direct? Or, more inappropriate, is she a "good" director?

    For several reasons that's a question I cannot answer. For the most part, I don't know what constitutes a "good" director. I mean, some are quick to say Tyler Perry wouldn't be defined as a "good" director. However, for many, he gets the job done on several levels. And really, is a film's success directly related to the script, the editing and actors, more so than what the director brings to the table? I don't know, I'm just posing the question.

    Having said that, I'm excited about this project. It has the markings of something that fits my groove zone.

    One last question. I know Sergio has been around long enough to have help Moses carry down the Ten Commandments, but -->"Back in the 1936 Orson Welles, a few years before he directed his film Citizen Kane, directed a black stage version in New York set in Haiti, called Voodoo Macbeth which caused a sensation back in its day."

    How in the heck does he know that stuff?!

  • CareyCarey | March 3, 2013 1:12 PM

    " I know a lot of stuff and I read a lot of stuff "

    OH, I see.

    The police often question him just because they find him interesting. His lips alone has experience more than a lessor man's entire body. His blood smells like cologne. He is the most interesting man in the world.

    " I don't always watch movies, but when I do, I write about them on Shadow and Act. Stay thirsty my friends." ~ Sergio Mims

  • sergio | March 3, 2013 12:48 PM

    How in the heck does he know that stuff?

    Simple. I know a lot of stuff and I read a lot of stuff

  • Peggy | March 3, 2013 11:27 AMReply

    Wow, talk about exciting casting. Howard, Saana, Harry Lennix and Blair Underwood? Doing what only Orson Welles has done AND with a black woman director? Good Luck to these guys!

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