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The Scandal star has signed on to play Anita Hill and executive produce a TV movie for the premium cable network, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Called Confirmation, the telepic — which is in development from HBO Films — will detail the explosive 1991 Clarence Thomas Supreme Court nomination hearings (at which Hill testified), which brought the country to a standstill and forever changed the way people think about sexual harassment, victims’ rights and modern-day race relations.
Academy Award-nominated writer Susannah Grant (Erin Brockovich) will pen the script and executive produce the drama, which is being produced by Groundswell Productions in association with ABC Signature Studios. Groundswell CEO Michael London (ABC’s upcoming soap Astronaut Wives Club) and production president Janice Williams will executive produce alongside Grant and star Washington. Sources tell THR that Rick Famuyiwa (Sundance hit Dope, The Wood) is in talks to direct the pic, but no deal is in place.
See more 40 Years of HBO
Confirmation comes as Washington was poised to film Warner Bros.’ feature drama Unforgettable in the summer for director Amma Asante, but the HBO project may take over her hiatus from Scandal, her hit ABC series from Shonda Rhimes.
For HBO, Confirmation comes as the premium cabler is building its roster of original films. HBO this week tapped Elizabeth Banks and Paul Giamatti to play tennis legends Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs, respectively, in a movie detailing the duo’s legendary Battle of the Sexes match. Additionally, HBO is also prepping an adaptation of Bryan Cranston‘s Tony winner All the Way with Jay Roach attached to direct.
The Confirmation deal also marks a big off-network sale for ABC Signature, the boutique arm of ABC Studios. It’s also HBO’s latest buy from an outside studio following series including Warner Bros. Television’s The Leftovers and upcoming Westworld.
Grant is repped by CAA and Kleinberg Lange; Washington is with CAA, Washington Square Films and Hansen Jacobson; Famuyiwa is with WME, Oasis Media Group and Del Shaw.
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