Multiple Black celebrities are buying out theaters to support The Woman King at the box office.
Several notables are buying out theaters to pack the seats with viewers, much like how celebrities and online personalities supported films like Black Panther and Crazy Rich Asians.
The celebs taking part in The Woman King buyouts inlude Octavia Spencer, Tracee Ellis Ross, Kerry Washington Lena Waithe, Sanaa Lathan, and Kandi Burruss. Other names on the list include SZA, Jennifer Hudson, Taraji P. Henson, Boris and Nicole Kodjoe, Gabrielle Union-Wade, Tina Knowles-Lawson and Luvvie Ajayi.
In an exclusive statement to Shadow and Act, director Gina Prince-Bythewood described the support for the film "incredibly moving."
“Folks are riding for this film and it is incredibly moving because it means people want to share the feeling the film has given them,” she said. “But more so there is a palpable feeling of so many rooting for the film because it’s success touches all of us. When one of us succeeds it keeps the door open for more of us to disrupt the industry with our original stories.”
Prince-Bythewood also talked about working on the film with Shadow and Act in September, saying she was overwhelmed with Viola Davis–who is producing the film as well as starring–asked her to come aboard as director.
"The connection was guttural for me, this film," she said.
“And certainly when you’re going in to get a job as a director, you have to portray strength and swagger, and I can get us through this, and I can handle these millions of dollars. But there was something about being in that room and being with Viola, and I went for the truth. I always go for the truth, but I went for the truth.”
The Woman King is in theaters now.