Ava DuVernay’s second Netflix endeavor is up on its feet and in its final stages. Propelled by the success of 13th, DuVernay has directed her attention to one of the most notorious cases in the criminal justice system, the Central Park Five.
Written and Directed by the Academy Award nominee, the four-episode series will delve into the lives of the five teenagers who were wrongfully convicted of the vicious rape that occurred in 1989 – Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana and Korey Wise.
DuVernay will keep the series true-to-life and chronicle the entirety of the 25-year court process, beginning in the spring of ’89 when the strangers were first questions, and coming to close in 2014 when the Harlem men were exonerated and reached a $41 million settlement with the city of New York.
Featured actors will include the highly acclaimed John Leguizamo (who will play Raymond Santana Sr., the father of 14-year-old Raymond Santana Jr.), Michael K. Williams (who will play Bobby McCray, the devoted father of 15-year-old Antron McCray Williams), and Vera Farmiga (who will portray Elizabeth Lederer, the Manhattan Assistant District Attorney and lead prosecutor on the case).
Produced by Jeff Skoll and Jonathan King from Participant Media, Oprah Winfrey/Harpo Films, Jane Rosenthal and Berry Welsh from Tribeca Productions and Ava DuVernay, the Netflix Original is set to make its global premiere to the service in 2019.
“This is one of the most talked-about cases of our time,” said Cindy Holland, Vice President of Netflix original content. “After powerfully reframing the public conversation about criminality and injustice in 13th, Ava now turns a new lens to a case that exposes deep flaws in our criminal justice system.”