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Antoine Fuqua to Direct Feature Documentary About Nelson Mandela (EXCLUSIVE)

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K.J. Yossman Antoine Fuqua is set to direct a feature documentary about Nelson Mandela, Variety has learned. Provisionally titled “Troublemaker: The Story Behind the Mandela Tapes,” the doc will use newly discovered audio interviews with Mandela himself to deliver an “honest, accurate and definitive depiction” of the man who remains a global symbol of justice, hope and universal human dignity, according to a press release.

The “Training Day” director has teamed with Mandela’s close friend and former cellmate Mac Maharaj on the project, who will serve as an executive producer.

While spending 12 years alongside Mandela in a tiny cell on Robben Island, Maharaj transcribed Mandela’s autobiography before eventually smuggling it out of jail.

He later went on to become a minister in Mandela’s government. “Using recently discovered audio interviews of Mandela intimately recounting his life experiences, as well as the personal reflections and insights of Maharaj, the film will reveal the forces that shaped the global icon that is Nelson Mandela,” reads the logline. “Jailed for 27 years, this pioneering activist lawyer turned freedom fighter walked from prison into a country on the brink of a violent racial conflagration to become the first democratically elected president of South Africa.” Maharaj will also lend his own experience and insight to the project, shedding light on details such as how he managed to set up an illicit communication link for Mandela to be able to speak to the ANC leadership in exile. “It’s an honor to bring to the screen the untold story of Mandela, a man I’ve revered my entire life,” Fuqua said.

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