Through the movie The Birth of a Nation, American actor, director, producer, writer and musical performer Nate Parker is reviving and reinforcing African American history.
The Birth of a Nation is a 2016 American history film that tells the story of Nat Turner, the enslaved African American who led a slave rebellion in Southhampton County, Virginia, in 1831.
In the movie, Nat Turner, as a child, is taught to read so he can study the bible and preach its gospel to fellow slaves. Later, Turner begins to see the scope of slavery and decides to become a different kind of leader.
Nate Parker stars as Nat Turner, with Armie Hammer, Aja Naomi King, Penelope Ann Miller, Gabrielle Union and others. Parker is co-writer, co-producer and director of the film.
On January 25, 2016, the movie premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival. It also ended up with the largest deal at the film festival (and the largest deal to date), after Fox Searchlight Pictures bought worldwide rights of the film for $17.5 million.
It is surprising that the movie has the same title with D.W. Griffith’s 1915 Ku Klux Klan (KKK) propaganda film. Although, Griffith’s The Birth of a Nation (also known as The Clansman) is a silent movie, unlike Parker’s. And Griffith’s film sought to solidify white supremacy, while Parker’s film celebrates and reinforces black triumph and freedom.
Parker’s The Birth of a Nation released by Fox Searchlight Pictures in the United States on October 7, 2016.