Viola Davis is all over the place these days. It feels good to say that. How to Get Away with Murder season three premiered on ABC last Thursday, the first trailer for Denzel Washington’s Fences hit the web this morning and now, she’s joining director Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave) for his next project, the heist thriller Widows, written by McQueen and Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl). “Say no more, I’m sold,” I can hear you say. I know. Same here. But please, let me continue.
As Variety reports (via Collider), Widows is based on 2002 British mini-series of the same name. It’s centered around four armed bank robbers killed in a failed heist, leaving their widows to finish the job. This is a rather pulpy, commercial and unexpected turn for the Academy Award-winning director, and I couldn’t be happier to see it. The director has remained closely knit to serious character dramas throughout this career, and it’s very exciting to see him stretch his wings and fly a little higher. Plus, he’s a singular talent, so his talents will undoubtably shine no matter what. With Flynn’s voice, it’s certain to have an extra kick as well.
Widows will come nearly four years after McQueen’s last film. Although the director was once set to make the HBO limited series Codes of Conduct, the station backed out and McQueen sadly moved on. It’s a pity, because its exploration of race involved in that piece seemed both timely and massively relevant these days. It also would have been great to see what McQueen could do in the TV medium.
Expect a murderer’s row with this ensemble, though. And yes, that pun was intended. Jennifer Lawrence was also reportedly sought for a part, but scheduling conflicts prevented her from coming onboard. Though it’s unclear who else is considered at this time, we should hear more details soon. Meanwhile, Davis is busy filming How to Get Away with Murder, but she’ll be on hiatus next spring. That’s likely when production begins on this new movie.