MLK Biopic 'Selma' Casts Coretta Scott King (Exclusive)

Carmen Ejogo Sparkles Premiere Arrivals- P 2014
AP Images

Carmen Ejogo Sparkles Premiere Arrivals- P 2014

Carmen Ejogo will star opposite David Oyelowo, who will play Martin Luther King Jr. in the civil rights drama.

Carmen Ejogo, who starred in musical drama Sparkle, is in talks to play Coretta Scott King in Selma, the Martin Luther King Jr. drama about the historic civic rights marches.

David Oyelowo is on board to play Martin Luther King Jr. in the film, while Tom Wilkinson will play President Lyndon B. Johnson. Ava DuVernay (Middle of Nowhere) is directing.

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Selma details the attempts of black marchers to walk from Selma to Montgomery, the capital of Alabama, in 1965 in order to gain voting rights, only to be beaten back by police. It took the organizers three attempts to make the journey as marchers swelled in numbers each time.

Coretta Scott and Martin Luther King Jr. were married on June 18, 1953, and she was an influential activist during the African-American civil rights movement in the 1960s. She marched with her husband during the Selma Voting Rights Movement.

STORY: MLK Drama 'Selma' Casting Its President Johnson

The film has a strong collection of producers working on it, including Oprah Winfrey and her Harpo banner, Plan B's Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner (who produced Oscar-winning film 12 Years a Slave), along with Christian Colson.

Pathe is financing the film, and the company's Cameron McCracken also is producing. Paramount is handling domestic distribution.

Ejogo is an English actress and singer who starred opposite Whitney Houston and Jordin Sparks as Sister Anderson in the 2012 remake of the 1976 film Sparkle. Also starring in Alex Cross, she'll next be seen in horror-thriller sequel The Purge: Anarchy, hitting theaters on July 18. She's repped by ICM Partners and Authentic Talent and Literary Management.

Twitter: @Beccamford