Mo’Nique Returning To Film With ‘Blackbird’
It might not seem like it, but it’s already been four years since Mo’Nique won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in 2009’s Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ By Sapphire. And in that time, she hasn’t really appeared in any other films. Rather, she’s gotten into talk shows, producing, etc. You know, famous/successful people stuff. But now she’s ready to return to the big-screen.
Mo’Nique has signed on to join Grey’s Anatomy alum Isaiah Washington in Blackbird, an adaptation of the novel by Larry Duplechan. The film, to be directed by Patrik Ian Polk and shot in Hattiesburg, MS, centers on a male singer in a church choir who struggles with his sexuality upon realizing he’s gay, a realization that won’t exactly sit well with the small, conservative community. This sexual awakening unfortunately coincides with his parents’ separation and his younger sister’s mysterious disappearance. Heavy stuff.
At the risk of being typecast as questionable mothers, Mo’Nique plays the young man’s “heartbroken mom, who blames her son’s lifestyle revelation for his sister going missing.” Washington, meanwhile, plays his supportive father, attempting to help his son navigate the complicated waters of manhood as best he can. Of course, this is somewhat ironic considering the circumstances of Washington’s exit from Grey’s Anatomy. Maybe it’s part of some sort of ongoing atonement.
Mo’Nique is an executive producer on Blackbird alongside her husband, Sidney Hicks, through Hicks Media.
“Blackbird is a film about the choices people are forced to make as they struggle to figure out how to be themselves,” Hicks said. “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.”
This sounds like a wonderfully melodramatic indie film, so I’m definitely looking forward to its release. There aren’t many movies that address both issues of color and matters of sexual identity. I can’t wait.