Two set for slavery drama…

Mike Fleming over at Deadline hears that Liev Schreiber (‘Ray Donovan,’ ‘The Bulter’) and Jaden Smith (‘The Karate Kid,’ ‘After Earth’) have closed deals to take the leads in ‘The Good Lord Bird.’

Adapted from the 2013 novel of the same name, the film will see Smith playing Henry “Little Onion” Shackleford, a young slave who links up with radical abolitionist John Brown (Schreiber) in 1856 Kansas. Together with Brown, and his renegade band of freedom warriors, they traverse American, raising arms and ammunition for the battle against slavery, meeting with Frederick Douglass and Canada along the way. Eventually Little Onion finds himself with Brown at the historic raid on Harpers Ferry in 1859—one of the great catalysts for the Civil War.

The book’s author James McBride (‘Miracle at St. Anna,’ ‘Red Hook Summmer’) is attached to produce, alongside Schreiber and Brian Taylor.

Schreiber’s latest offering, the Ruairi Robinson-directed sci-fi thriller ‘Last Days of Mars,’ is in cinemas across the country now.