Cynthia Erivo has been billed to star Star In new Musical Drama Talent Show. The Oscar-nominated actress will play a failed songwriter who returns home to Chicago to lead a group of at-risk youth in their annual talent show, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Emmy Award-winning writer Lena Waithe has written the latest version of the screenplay for Talent Show, after Aimee Lagos and Duane Adler wrote previous drafts. The project is based on an idea by Adler, who is best known for creating the Step Up dance movie franchise and writing the screenplay for Save the Last Dance.
Gandja Monteiro, who has directed an episode of The Chi, the TV series Waithe created, will make her feature film directorial debut with Talent Show, which is currently only the working title of the Universal project.
Waithe, who shared the news on social media without further comment, will executive produce the musical with State Street Pictures’ George Tillman Jr. and Robert Teitel, who last made The Hate U Give. The project does not currently have a start date.
Erivo was nominated for the Best Actress and the Best Original Song Oscars earlier this year for her portrayal of abolitionist Harriet Tubman in Harriet. The British actress, singer and songwriter is fast approaching EGOT status, as she has already won a Tony, Grammy and Emmy for her lead performance in the Broadway musical revival of The Color Purple.
She made her movie debut in 2018 with Widows and Bad Times at the El Royale, in which she portrayed a singer, and she has recently been seen in HBO crime drama The Outsider. She will play soul icon Aretha Franklin in the upcoming series of TV anthology show Genius.