Tony winners Audra McDonald and Myles Frost have joined the cast of Academy Award nominee Ava DuVernay’s latest film, inspired by Pulitzer Prize winner Isabel Wilkerson’s “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents.”
McDonald is a six-time Tony Award winner, with more performance wins than any other actor and the only person to win in all four acting categories. Also a Grammy and Primetime Emmy winner, McDonald’s screen work includes “A Raisin in the Sun,” “Private Practice,” “Respect” and “The Good Fight,” the latter for which she was nominated for three Critics Choice Awards. In 2016, McDonald was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama.
Meanwhile, Frost is the reigning winner of best actor in a musical for his portrayal of Michael Jackson in “MJ the Musical,” which marked his Broadway debut. The much-acclaimed newcomer was also nominated for a Grammy for the cast recording.
McDonald and Frost join a star-studded cast, led by Academy Award nominee Aunjanue Ellis, which features Niecy Nash, Vera Farmiga, Nick Offerman, Connie Nielsen, Jon Bernthal and Jasmine Cephas-Jones.
Announced in October 2020, DuVernay wrote and directs “Caste,” which adapts Wilkerson’s acclaimed book. Described in The New York Times as “an instant American classic and almost certainly the keynote nonfiction book of the American century thus far,” Wilkerson’s work — and subsequently DuVernay’s film — examines the system of hierarchy that has shaped America.
DuVernay also produces the project alongside frequent collaborator ARRAY Filmworks’ Paul Garnes (“Selma,” “Middle of Nowhere”). Production on the independent film, financed by J4A, began in Georgia in December, with additional filming set to take place in Germany and India.
McDonald is represented by WME; Frost is repped by UTA and Fox Rothschild; and DuVernay is repped by Del Shaw Moonves Tanaka Finkelstein Lezcano Bobb & Dang and CAA, which will handle sales for the film.