Netflix has unveiled first look images of the late Chadwick Boseman’s final film, “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” set for release on Dec. 18. In the photos released via Twitter, the late “Black Panther” star is suited up in a tuxedo, performing music on stage with co-star Viola Davis.
Based on August Wilson’s award-winning play of the same name, the film follows the story of trailblazing blues singer Ma Rainey, portrayed by Davis. Set in 1927 Chicago, the movie grapples with issues of race, music, relationships and the exploitation of Black recording artists.
Boseman played Ma’s boyfriend Levee, a young, ambitious trumpeter who aspired to make his own mark in the music industry.
The film is directed by George C. Wolfe, the two-time Tony-winning director behind “Angels in America: Millennium Approaches” and “Bring in ‘da Noise, Bring in ‘da Funk.” Wolfe also served as the artistic director of The Public Theater from 1993 to 2004.
Other cast members include Glynn Turman, Colman Domingo and Michael Potts. The upcoming film was produced by Todd Black, Denzel Washington and Dany Wolf, and the screenwriter is Ruben Santiago-Hudson.
Boseman died on Aug. 28 after being diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer in 2016. He kept his battle with cancer a secret, and over four years it progressed to stage 4, his family later revealed. Although he never spoke publicly about his diagnosis, he worked through treatment for much of his film career.
On Monday, Boseman’s “21 Bridges” co-star Sienna Miller revealed that the late actor shared a portion of his salary from the film with her so she could continue working as a co-producer of the project. As remembrances of Boseman continue to pour in, Disneyland also unveiled a brand new mural to honor Boseman.