Shadow and Act has learned Netflix is developing Rustin, a biopic directed by Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom director George C. Wolfe. The project is produced by Barack and Michelle Obama’s Higher Ground Productions. The film is written by Academy Award winner Dustin Lance Black (Milk)
The logline: Rustin tells the story of charismatic, gay, civil rights activist Bayard Rustin, who overcame an onslaught of obstacles, and altered the course of American history by organizing the 1963 march on Washington.
Executive producers for the project are Higher Ground Productions’ Priya Swaminathan and Tonia Davis, Bruce Cohen and Black.
This will be the first dramatized project and the second narrative project on Rustin. A documentary, Brother Outsider: The Life of Bayard Rustin, premiered in 2003.
The Obamas’ Higher Ground has multiple projects in different stages of development at Netflix. They’ve already released docs such as American Factory, Becoming and Crip Camp.
Five-time Tony winner Wolfe is gaining buzz during awards season for directing Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.