News Brief

Sophie Okonedo Looks Absolutely Boss as Queen Margaret in 'The Hollow Crown: The Wars of the Roses'

Sophie Okonedo stars as Queen Margaret of Anjou in the Shakespearean miniseries adaptation, airing December on PBS' Great Performances.

Sophie Okonedo, aka Sophie Okonedo OBE, is a boss. Nothing new there. But in the trailer and stills for The Hollow Crown: The Wars of the Roses, the 48-year-old English actor is bosshood personified.


The self-described “Jewish-Nigerian-Brit” from London, who won a 2014 Tony Award for her portrayal of Ruth Younger in the Broadway revival of A Raisin In The Sun, stars as Queen Margaret of Anjou in the three-part follow-up to the 2013 BAFTA-winning Shakespearean miniseries adaptation, The Hollow Crown.

While the first Hollow Crown covered Shakespeare's second historical tetralogy, or “Henriad” (encompassing "Richard II," "Henry IV, Parts I and II" and "Henry V"), this one picks up with film versions of "Henry VI" (in two parts) and "Richard III."

Sophie Okonedo as Queen Margaret in The Hollow Crown: The War of the Roses

Okonedo appears in all three films as Margaret, a role that, as with too much of the film and television industry, has historically gone to white women.

Perhaps anticipating the racist P.O.S. that always seem to come out of the woodwork (see: the racist P.O.S. that threw a hissy fit over a black Hermione Granger), Hollow Crown director Dominic Cooke made it very clear that Okonedo was “the best person in the country” to play the part. “Her visceral power and range is so extraordinary - that’s what I was really looking for,” he told Express.co.uk back in May.

"I don’t think that you can do a piece of work that is about who we are as a society and just have white people doing it," Cooke added.

The series, which also stars Judi Dench, Benedict Cumberbatch, Hugh Bonneville, Sally Hawkins, Keeley Hawes and Tom Sturridge, aired on BBC this past May. It broadcasts in the U.S. over three consecutive Sundays beginning December 11 at 9pm on PBS' Great Performances.

Check out the trailer and some pretty badass images of Okonedo below.

Sophie Okonedo as Queen Margaret in The Hollow Crown: The War of the Roses

Sophie Okonedo as Queen Margaret in The Hollow Crown: The War of the Roses

H/T Shadow & Act

popular
Still from YouTube

Michael Kiwanuka Pays Homage to the Black Liberation Movements of the '60s In New Video 'Hero'

The artist's latest single references some of his personal heroes including Malcolm X, Fred Hampton, Tupac Shakur and more.

British-Ugandan soul singer Michael Kiwanuka drops another single ahead of the release of his forthcoming album, KIWANUKA.

In "Hero" the singer pays homage to the Black Power and Civil Rights movements of the 1960s and 70s. The music video, directed by CC Wade references several Black leaders and some of the artist's personal heroes including Malcolm X, Fred Hampton, Martin Luther King Jr., Sam Cooke, Tupac Shakur, Marvin Gaye and more. It also depicts the FBI's often illegal efforts to stop Black movements and other anti-establishment groups through its Counterintelligence Program, as noted in Rolling Stone.

Keep reading... Show less
popular

Listen to Bongeziwe Mabandla’s New Single ‘Jikeleza’

Bongeziwe Mabandla shares new optimistic single.

"Jikeleza" is South African folk musician Bongeziwe Mabandla's latest single. The song, which is sung in IsiXhosa like most of the man's work, speaks on love giving us life.

"It is about our universal need to connect," says Bongeziwe in a press release. "It is about the togetherness in people and about the things that bind us and make us the same."

Keep reading... Show less
popular

AKA, Cassper Nyovest, Samthing Soweto and Others are on the SXSW 2020 Line-Up

9 African artists have been confirmed for next year's SXSW.

Nine artists from the continent, six of which are from South Africa, are among the first wave of Showcasing Artists on the SXSW 2020 line-up. AKA, Cassper Nyovest, Amanda Black, Samthing Soweto, Nadia Nakai and Moonchild Sanelly will be representing South Africa in the festival which takes place in Austin, Texas annually. Nigeria's Simi and Lady Donli and Lesotho's Morena Leraba are also on the line-up of showcasing artists, which consists of artists from 51 countries.

James Minor, Head of Music Festival at SXSW said:

"This season's first artist reveal is a compelling and diverse list of artists from all corners of the globe. In the continued spirit of discovery, we're pleased to give the world a glimpse of what it can expect to see next March; a genre-spanning and defying lineup of artists you'll undoubtedly be hearing about in the future."

The first wave of African artists is a great mixture of mainstream and niche artists, and it's highly likely to get even better with more artists being added in the near future before the festival takes place.

SXSW is taking place in Austin, TX between March 16 and 22.

View the current line-up here.

popular
Samir Hussein/WireImage via Getty Images

More Black Students are Being Admitted into Cambridge University Because of Stormzy

Dubbed the 'Stormzy effect', admissions of Black students at the university are now up by 50 percent.

When Ghanaian-British rapper Stormzy is not busy making hit records such as "Vossi Bop" and "Shut Up", he's helping Black students get into one of the most prestigious universities in the world. Last year, the rapper launched his own scholarship which aims to provide funding for Black students wanting to be admitted into Cambridge University. According to AllHipHop, the rapper has been credited with a 50 percent increase in the admissions of Black students at the top-tier university. The phenomenon has now been dubbed the "Stormzy effect".

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

popular.