Chadwick Boseman to play Japan's first African samurai in new film 'Yasuke'
Yasuke was a Portuguese Mozambique native who was brought to Japan as a slave of Jesuit missionaries. He was reportedly the first black man to set foot in Japan.
Chadwick Boseman who played superhero 'Black Panther' in 'Avengers: Endgame' will play the role of the first ever African samurai - 'Yasuke' - in an upcoming film adaptation of the story of Yasuke. The film will be set in the 16th century when Yasuke served under the Japanese warlord Oda Nobunaga. Mike De Luca of De Luca Productions, Picturestart's Erik Feig, Stephen L’Heureux's Solipsist, and Boseman and Logan Coles' Xception Content will produce the film.
According to the report in Deadline, Yasuke was a Portuguese Mozambique native who was brought to Japan as a slave of Jesuit missionaries. He was reportedly the first black man to set foot in Japan and Nobunaga, a warlord in Japan, who aimed to unite the country under his banner took interest in Yasuke for the same reason. The film is expected to be about the relationship between the two men and how it developed resulting in Yasuke not only gaining Nobunaga's respect and friendship but also the title of a samurai. Co-creator of Narcos Doug Miro will write the script for the film.
Speaking of the role and the film, Boseman said, "The legend of Yasuke is one of history’s best-kept secrets, the only person of non-Asian origin to become a Samurai. That’s not just an action movie, that’s a cultural event, an exchange, and I am excited to be part of it."
MGM also has a rival 'Yasuke' project which is penned by Stuart C. Paul with Lloyd Braun and Andrew Mittman of Whalerock Industries producing the film. Boseman's project with Erik Feig was kickstarted when the latter was at Lionsgate where he headed production, however, the film was put in the backburner after he left the studios only to be picked up now.
Other than playing the role of T'Challa in 'Avengers: Endgame' recently, Boseman was also seen in '42' where is played the role of Jackie Robinson and as Thurgood Marshall in 'Marshall'. The actor will next be seen in '21 Bridges', which he is producing along with Joe and Anthony Russo, the directors of 'Avengers: Endgame'.
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