This story is wild and ridiculous all at the same time.
When Gregory Allen Howard set out to make a film on the life of Harriet Tubman in 1994 he didn’t imagine getting a suggestion like this.
‘Harriet’, which stars African British actress Cynthia Erivo, was released earlier this month.
The movie, 25 years in the making, has a wild backstory.
Allegedly when Howard, screenwriter and producer of ‘Harriet’, brought the script and concept to one studio executive they loved it and had a suggestion on who should play Tubman.
The suggestion…Julia Roberts.
Yes, that Julia Roberts.
A Los Angeles Times essay written by Howard himself details the story.
Howard saying in the essay that a then-president of a studio sublabel told him,
“This is a great script. Let’s get Julia Roberts to play Harriet Tubman. Fortunately, there was a single black person in that studio meeting 25 years ago who told him that Harriet Tubman was a black woman. The president replied, That was so long ago. No one will know that.”
That is an incredibly wild and sad thought to fathom even 25 years ago.
Thank goodness for the one black person in the room who bravely pointed out that playing Roberts would be a bad idea.
Obviously Twitter has a very strong reaction to this news and let their voice be heard.
Flip the pages to see the obviously strong reaction.