Jovan Adepo and Juliana Canfield are set to star as abolitionists William and Ellen Craft in the upcoming movie Everlasting Yea!.
Per Variety, the film is co-written and co-directed by Lynn Nottage and Tony Gerber and will follow the love story of the Crafts and their rise to fame in the abolitionist movement after escaping enslavement.
The film is set in the free North before the Civil War and follows the abolitionist movement.
It follows the movement through the story the Crafts, who “must negotiate their unwanted celebrity, their young marriage, and their safety as the news of their singular escape — with Ellen disguised as a white Southern gentleman, and William in the role of her obedient slave — becomes the most sensational and subversive news story of the day further dividing an already fractured nation.”
'Everlasting Yea!' will be produced by Pachinko showrunner Soo Hugh as well as Curate founder Britton Rizzio, with Ellen Craft’s great, great-granddaughter, Julia Ellen Craft, joining as a consultant.
In a statement about the project, which will be the her debut, Nottage commented, “Our film centers the complex reality of free Blacks in the antebellum North, posing the question, what is freedom, and what price must one pay in order to maintain it?”
“I’m incredibly excited to be working with Tony and Lynn to bring this piece of history to film. Ellen and Will’s story is only prefaced by their past as enslaved people. As runaways. Their true journey of discovery begins once they’ve arrived in the free North. When the running is done. That’s the story that I want to take part in sharing.”
“Lynn and Tony’s movie follows a thrilling and surprising thread of our history. It’s an honor to join them and Jovan in this excavation of identity and declaration of love. Yea!”