Oscar winner Viola Davis has found her most transformative role yet.
In The Woman King, Davis (a Best Supporting Actress winner for Fences and four-time nominee) stars as General Nanisca, leader of the all-female Agojie warriors. Commonly known as the Dahomey Amazons — a name given to them by French colonizers — the group served as the inspiration for the Dora Milaje in Marvel's Black Panther. The movie tells the true story of how the army defended their African kingdom from being taken over in the 1800s.
"My king, the Europeans wish to conquer us. They will not stop until the whole of Africa is theirs," Davis' Nanisca warns in the trailer for The Woman King. "We must fight back, for our people."
"You're asking me to take them to war," a wary King Ghezo (John Boyega) replies. To which Nanisca tells him, "Some things are worth fighting for."
The Woman King co-stars Thuso Mbedu, Sheila Atim and Lashana Lynch as members of the Agojie and is directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood (Love & Basketball and The Old Guard) from a script she wrote with Dana Stevens. Davis also serves as a producer on the film.
"There's always a vision you have for your career, but there are very few roles as an actress of color. Dark skin with a wide nose and big lips. I'm just gonna continue to say it. Those stories are extraordinarily limited," Davis told Vanity Fair. "To know that I had a hand in bringing it to fruition... it's transformative."
The Woman King hits theaters Sept. 16. Watch the trailer below.