A United Kingdom, directed by Amma Asante (Belle), will received its world premiere by opening the 60th BFI London Film Festival on October 5th. Starring David Oyelowo (Selma) and Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl), the film revolves around the true story of Seretse Khama, King of Bechuanaland (modern Botswana), and Ruth Williams, the London office worker he married in 1947 in the face of fierce opposition from their families and the British and South African governments. This is the story of how the British Government conspired with apartheid South Africa to prevent the mixed race royal couple from returning home.
The couple was exiled from Bechuanaland for 5 years. Eventually allowed to return in 1956, Khama emerged as a crucial leader of the country’s independence movement, becoming the country’s Prime Minister in 1965 and, upon independence in 1966, Botswana’s first President, serving until his death from cancer in 1980.
The script was written by Guy Hibbert and was based on the book Colour Bar by Susan Williams. Rick McCallum (Star Wars), Oyelowo, Justin Moore-Lewy, Brunson Green (The Help) serve as executive producers of the film alongside BBC Films’ Christine Langan, the BFI’s Ben Roberts, Ingenious Media’s Eleanor Clark Windo.
In 2005, Asante, was the recipient of a BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television) Award for Outstanding Debut for her first feature, A Way of Life. After her feature debut, Asante started to develop Where Hands Touch originally supposed to go into production fall of 2009; however, the project fell through. Ten years later, Asante went on to direct her second feature Belle, starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw in 2014 which grossed over $16M.
Check out the powerful trailer for A United Kingdom above!