Let’s be real, Nate Parker got royally screwed when Birth of a Nation, the film he wrote, directed, starred in, and put his entire career on the line for, was ignored during the awards season a couple years ago. After looking like the odds-on favorite for months, years-old controversies emerged and Parker did not handle the public response well at all. We haven’t heard anything from him since, but now he’s back with a new project and hopefully it will be the start of a comeback.
According to Deadline, Parker will write and direct Black & Blue, a film based on the story of decorated LAPD officer Ralph Waddy. Waddy was involved in some of the most high-profile cases in the city’s history during a racially charged time as it dealt with the Watts riots, Robert Kennedy’s assassination at the Ambassador Hotel, the rise of the Black Panthers, the capture of the Skid Row Slasher and the Manson Murders (which Waddy connected to Charles Manson and his followers). The film will mostly deal with Waddy’s battle to gain his father’s approval, and struggle with identity between being black and being a cop in such a racially charged climate.
No word on if Parker will take a role but he would seem to be a good fit to play Waddy. Or perhaps he figures it’s best to keep out of the public spotlight for a while longer. He will rewrite a script previously penned by Jim McGrath, and hopes to begin filming in July.