By Mildred Europa Taylor
Barring any unforeseen circumstances, Oscar-nominated actor, Djimon Hounsou, will kickstart shooting the much-anticipated biopic ‘Panzi’ this summer.
The Beninese-American actor and model who is best known for his Oscar-nominated performance in “Blood Diamond,” is set to portray the role of the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize winner, Denis Mukwege, in the film “Panzi”.
The film will be directed by actress-turned-director Marie-Helene Roux, Variety reports.
Mukwege was jointly awarded last year’s Nobel Peace Prize with Iraqi Yazidi human rights activist Nadia Murad for “their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict.”
63-year-old Mukwege, a renowned Congolese gynaecologist and surgeon, has helped thousands of women and girls who have been victims of rape and sexual abuse at the hands of rebel forces in the Democratic Republic of Congo since the beginning of the civil war in the early 90s.
He founded the Panzi Hospital in the South Kivu province in 1999 to provide free and comprehensive care for female victims of rape and other forms of sexual violence during the conflict.
1divided, a production company, acquired the exclusive rights to the life and story of Mukwege and his colleague Guy-Bernard Cadière. The two doctors have been working together to end sexual violence against women in Congo.
They co-wrote the book “Panzi”, which was published in 2014. The book, according to Variety, “chronicles what they have witnessed and experienced at the hospital, with heartfelt testimonies from victims.”
Hounsou, a Beninese-American actor and model who is best known for his Oscar-nominated performances in “Blood Diamond,” and “In America” will headline “Panzi.”