‘Black Panther’ Chadwick Boseman to Play Attorney Thurgood Marshall in Courtroom Thriller

     December 16, 2015

chadwick-boseman-jackie-robinson-sliceMarvel’s resident Black Panther is blowing up. Chadwick Boseman had been scooping up roles in 42, Draft Day, and Get on Up before announced as the titular hero of Wakanda in the MCU, and his reign has only just begun. In addition to Captain America: Civil War, his solo Marvel film, and the controversial Gods of Egypt, the actor has been announced in the role of attorney-turned-Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall in a new courtroom thriller from director Reginald Hudlin.

While Marshall passed away in January of 1993, his legacy lives on. Two landmarks of his career are Brown vs. Board of Education, a landmark case of the 20th century that found separate educational facilities based on race were inherently unequal, and his ascension to Supreme Court Justice, making him the first African-American to receive such a rank. This film, titled Marshall, however, envisions a young man just beginning his career working with the NAACP.


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Image via Warner Bros.

Said Hudling of Marshall:

Thurgood Marshall was a man who took his life in his hands every time he came to a town to bring justice. Marshall was a cowboy who used his law books as guns. He was the smartest guy in the room of any room he was in. But he wasn’t a punk and didn’t hesitate to throw a punch if the occasion called for it.

Trial lawyer Michael Koskoff and his screenwriting son Jacob (Macbeth with Michael Fassbender) collaborated on the screenplay, which focuses on a case in Philadelphia involving a black chauffeur charged with the sexual assault and attempted murder of his socialite employer. Filming has been announced for this week in Los Angeles and will resume after the holidays in late spring.

Here’s the official synopsis:

MARSHALL is based on a true incident in the life of Thurgood Marshall, when he was a young lawyer, long before his appointment to the U.S. Supreme Court. As the nation teeters on the brink of WWII, a nearly bankrupt NAACP sends Marshall to conservative Connecticut to defend a black chauffeur against his wealthy socialite employer in a sexual assault and attempted murder trial that quickly became tabloid fodder. In need of a high profile victory but muzzled by a segregationist court, Marshall is partnered with Samuel Friedman, a young Jewish lawyer who has never tried a case. Marshall and Friedman struggle against a hostile storm of fear and prejudice, driven to discover the truth in the sensationalized trial which helped set the groundwork for the Civil Rights Movement to come.


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