Image Entertainment acquired the film at Cannes and will open it in theaters Sept. 6. Winnie Mandela stars Jennifer Hudson as the longtime wife of South African activist-turned-President Nelson Mandela (Terrence Howard) who fights for her husband’s freedom during his long incarceration, endures 18 months of solitary confinement of her own and battles to help end apartheid. The movie from writer-director Darrell J. Roodt hits theaters nearly four months ahead of Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom, the Weinstein Company’s biopic about Nelson Mandela starring Idris Elba.
This would be a first — an Oscar winner at the American Idol judging table. Sources have confirmed that Idol alumna Jennifer Hudson is in conversations with Fox about joining the talent show, which launched her career, next season. She may be one of several prominent Idol alums to return as judges next season, with inaugural winner Kelly Clarkson and second-place finishers Adam Lambert and Clay Aiken also in the mix. Fox entertainment president Kevin Reilly said last week that Idol will likely revert to the three-judge format next season. The show’s overhaul will likely also include the (second) departure of executive producer Nigel Lythgoe. (He first left in 2008 but was brought back two years later to usher the transition from Simon Cowell to Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler). In TV, Hudson recently recurred on NBC’s Smash.
LOS ANGELES, May 16, 2013 – Image Entertainment, an RLJ Entertainment brand, has acquired all U.S. rights to Winnie Mandela at the 2013 Cannes International Film Festival. Budgeted at $15 million, the film is an adaptation of Anné Mariè du Preez Bezdrob’s biography Winnie Mandela: A Life and is written and directed by Darrell J. Roodt. Winnie Mandela stars Academy Award winner Jennifer Hudson (Dreamgirls; Sex in the City) and Academy Award nominee Terrence Howard (Hustle & Flow; Red Tails; Iron Man) and will be released in theaters Fall 2013. The film is presented by TD Jakes, and produced by André Pieterse (Ironwood Films) and Michael Mosca (Equinoxe Films). Bill Bromiley, Chief Acquisitions Officer for Image Entertainment, made today’s announcement.
NBC’s Smash returns for its second season on Tuesday, February 5 with a slew of new recurring guest stars including Jennifer Hudson, Sean Hayes and Jesse L. Martin, and new showrunner Josh Safran. You can watch a first-look clip here. Please note — the video auto plays.
‘The Inevitable Defeat Of Mister And Pete’ Underway With Jennifer Hudson, Jordin Sparks, Jeffrey Wright And Anthony Mackie
State Street Pictures has teamed with iDeal Partners on The Inevitable Defeat Of Mister And Pete. The George Tillman Jr-directed film stars Jennifer Hudson, Jordin Sparks, Jeffrey Wright, and Anthony Mackie. Michael Starrbury wrote the script, which follows two inner-city youths left to fend for themselves over the summer after their mothers are taken away by the authorities. Production began today in Brooklyn.
iDeal’s Rachel Cohen and Jana Edelbaum are producing with State Street’s Bob Teitel and Tillman. Alicia Keys is executive producer with Susan Lewis. Tillman, Teitel, Starburry, Sparks, and Wright are all repped by CAA, while Mackie is with UTA and Inspire Entertainment. Hudson is repped by CAA and AGPS Management.
She already has an Oscar, a Golden Globe a Grammy. Now Jennifer Hudson is going for an Emmy. The Dreamgirls co-star is set to appear in a multi-episode arc on NBC’s musical drama Smash next season, beginning with the second-season premiere. Hudson will play Veronica Moore, a Tony Award-winning Broadway star who impacts the lives of Karen (Katharine McPhee) and Ivy (Megan Hilty). “This series is a showcase for some of the best musical talent in the business and that’s a fitting description for Jennifer Hudson,” NBC chairman Bob Greenblatt said. “Her character will represent someone who reached their Broadway dream but also paid a price for it.” The stint reunites Hudson with Smash executive producer Steven Spielberg whose company DreamWorks also produced Dreamgirls. “I have no doubt Jennifer will continue to deliver even more inspiration to the audience responsible for giving us a second season on NBC,” he said. Smash will now feature two famous American Idol alumnas next season: McPhee, who was a finalist in Season 5, and Hudson, who was on the third season of the reality series.
Fine artist Andrew Levitas will make his feature directing debut with Lullaby, the ensemble drama that’s now cast Garrett Hedlund, Richard Jenkins, Jessica Brown Findlay, Jennifer Hudson, Terrence Howard and Amy Adams. Andrea Stone-Brokaw of Ananta Productions and Cary Brokaw of Avenue Pictures are producing.
The story begins when Hedlund’s character receives word that his estranged father (Jenkins) has decided to take himself off life support in less than 48 hours. Levitas wrote the script and will start shooting in June in New York.
Radiant Films is selling foreign rights. The producers are in discussions with several domestic distribs to license North America. Media House Capital and Three Point Capital are co-financing the film. Aaron L. Gilbert is an Executive Producer and Patrick Murray is a co-Executive Producer.