Spurned from a postcard showcasing a painting of Dido Elizabeth Belle alongside the director's white cousin prompted her to "jump on board" and create this sure-fire picture for human consumption.
The film Belle brings to life the little-known story of an 18th century aristocratic English woman who differed from all her contemporaries in one crucial way: she was of African descent.
Directed by Amma Asante, she was intrigued by a painting of Dido Elizabeth Belle and her white cousin Elizabeth, and felt that "it was inspiration" that compelled her to initiate the film. "The painting was such an evocative portrait because Dido has equal value as Elizabeth in the painting," she explained.
While it took a minute for Asante and the producer Damian Jones to gather enough funding to get the project off the ground, the film has sparked praise and applause, with many hailing this as another 12 Years a Slave tour de force. The Motion Picture Association of America recently gave the "based on a true story" picture a rating of PG for "some language, brief smoking scenes and thematic elements."
Dido receives inferior treatment from her family throughout the picture. The child of an admiral and a slave, there are moments where her character (played by Gubu Mbatha-Raw) is excluded from the family dinner table and insulted.
Likely this is a picture that is tamed and will be safe for ages above 10-years-old to watch. You can watch the trailer for the picture below:
Fox Searchlight will open the film in the U.S. on May 2, 2014; and it opens a month later in the U.K.
Props: Shadow and Act