The Selma and A United Kingdom actor David Oyelowo has signed up to movie adaptation Arc of Justice which tells the groundbreaking story of the Clarence Darrow-Ossian Sweet civil rights cases which also has The Nice Guys actor, Russell Crowe rumoured to be in talks to join on the project.

Based on Kevin Boyle’s book “Arc of Justice: A Saga of Race, Civil Rights, and Murder in the Jazz Age,” the true story centres on a racial incident in 1925 Detroit that put African-American doctor Ossian Sweet (Oyelowo) on the stand for murder. His defence was funded by the nascent National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People and led by Darrow (Crowe).

Jose Padilha, who directed and produced the successful dual language Netflix series Narcos, will take the director’s chair with Max Borenstein and Rodney Barnes having already written the script. Gordon, Borenstein, Hawk Koch, and Matt Jackson will produce, and Josh Clay Phillips will oversee the production for the Mark Gordon Company.

Arc of Justice

Crowe seems to excel in the roles of real-life people; he previously portrayed Jimmy Braddock in “Cinderella Man” and mathematician John Nash in “A Beautiful Mind,” which earned him an Oscar nomination. So this would be one role he could flex those acting chops in once again.

The new film will see Oyelowo in familiar territory after starring as Martin Luther King Jr. in Ava DuVernay’s Selma as well as Amma Asante’s A United Kingdom with Rosamund Pike and Disney’s Queen of Katwe with Lupita Nyong’o. His upcoming projects include Nash Edgerton’s untitled directorial project with Charlize Theron and the next Cloverfield movie with Gugu Mbatha-Raw.