Jurnee Smollet has landed the female lead in “The Burial,” a new courtroom drama from Amazon Studios.
The “Lovecraft Country” actor will star opposite Jamie Foxx and Tommy Lee Jones in the Maggie Betts-directed project. Based on a true story, the film follows a bankrupt funeral home owner who decides to sue a rival businessman over a handshake deal gone wrong. The owner hires a flamboyant attorney (Foxx) to handle the case.
Smollet will play Foxx’s opposing counsel, sources said. Betts is directing from a script written by Doug Wright. Producers on the film include Bobby Shriver via his Bobby Shriver Inc. banner and Double Nickel Entertainment’s Adam Richman and Jenette Kahn. Foxx will produce with partner Datari Turner, along with Maven Pictures’ Trudie Styler and Celine Rattray.
Smollet received critical claim and an Emmy nomination for lead actress in a drama series for her portrayal of Leti Lewis on HBO’s “Lovecraft Country.” Her previous TV credits include “Parenthood,” “Underground,” and “True Blood.”
In the feature film space, she dazzled as the DC Comics hero Black Canary in Margot Robbie’s “Birds of Prey,” and will soon reprise the character in a spinoff film at HBO Max. She will next be seen in “Escape From Spiderhead” opposite Chris Hemsworth at Netflix. Smollet will also executive produce and star in “Lou,” also at Netflix, alongside Allison Janney and Logan Marshall-Green.
The native New Yorker was born one of six siblings, and enjoyed a robust acting career as a child, including the notable gothic drama “Eve’s Bayou.” She is represented by CAA, Management 360, Nina Shaw and The Lede Company.
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