It’s been five years nearly to the day since comedian/actress Mo’Nique stunned film critics and fans with her performance in Lee Daniels’ Precious. That film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2009, and Mo’Nique instantly struck a chord in the film community with an electric performance as a monster mother which eventually won the actress an Academy Award. And now she’s set to return to the screen. The project in question is Blackbird, a new drama directed and co-written by Patrik-Ian Polk (Punks, Noah’s Arc) based on the novel by Larry Duplechan.
Mo’Nique c0-stars (and serves as one of the executive producers of the film as well) with Isiah Washington (recent Gotham Award nominee for Blue Caprice) as parents of a youth singer of a church choir who struggles with his sexuality in a small Southern Baptist town. Adding to the familial drama is the disappearance of a younger daughter, prompting potentially another bad mothering act for Mo’Nique when her character blames her son’s homosexuality on her daughter’s disappearance. The film was shot in Hattiesburg, Mississippi and may come out in theaters sometime this year.
Sidney Hicks, Mo’Nique’s husband and producing partner, commented, “Blackbird is a film about the choices people are forced to make as they struggle to figure out how to be themselves and why should just being who you are be a struggle? Since Mo’Nique won the Oscar, we have received a flood of scripts, but nothing captured our attention until Isaiah — who we have a high level of respect for — sent us Blackbird. We became instant fans of Patrik-Ian Polk and knew we had to get behind this important film.”