Casting Search Begins For Ava DuVernay's Central Park Five Netflix Series, Production Set To Start In July
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Casting Search Begins For Ava DuVernay's Central Park Five Netflix Series, Production Set To Start In July

The casting search has begun for the five lead actors to portray the Central Park Five in Ava DuVernay’s upcoming scripted Netflix series.

This scripted miniseries comes after the director’s documentary, 13th for the streaming giant.

The 5-episode limited series (created, written and produced by DuVernay) will chronicle the true story of the 1989 case in which five teens — Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana and Korey Wise — were wrongfully convicted of raping a woman, Trisha Melli, in Central Park. It will tell their story from their questioning in 1989 to 2014 when they were exonerated and a settlement was reached.

Four black actors, and one actor of mixed Puerto-Rican and black ancestry are being sought.

The open casting call suggests they are looking for unknown talent to topline the miniseries. It also suggests that the miniseries could prominently take place during the initial incident, arrests and trial as the ages depicted from 14-16.

“I had an extraordinary experience working with Netflix on 13th and am overjoyed to continue this exploration of the criminal justice system as a narrative project with Cindy Holland and the team there. The story of the men known as Central Park Five has riveted me for more than two decades. In their journey, we witness five innocent young men of color who were met with injustice at every turn – from coerced confessions to unjust incarceration to public calls for their execution by the man who would go on to be the President of the United States,” said DuVernay in a statement last year.

The Central Park Five were the subject of an acclaimed 2012 PBS documentary as well from Sarah Burns.

Jeff Skoll and Jonathan King of Participant Media are executive producers as well as Oprah Winfrey through her Harpo Films, Jane Rosenthal and Berry Welsh of Tribeca Productions and DuVernay.

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