Chewing Gum star Michaela Coel is set to star in upcoming Netflix and BBC Two drama Black Earth Rising.

Coel is set to star as Kate Ashby, a legal investigator, who was rescued as a child during the Rwandan genocide and adopted by a British prosecutor named Eve Ashby, played by Harriet Walter. The series takes place across Africa, Europe and the US.

According to the official synopsis; Kate was raised in Britain and, now in her late 20s, works as a legal investigator in the law chambers of Michael Ennis (John Goodman). When Eve takes on a genocide case at the International Criminal Court, prosecuting an African militia leader, it pulls Ennis and Ashby into a journey that will change their lives.

“Kate Ashby’s story is inspirational, it was an honour to play a character in possession of so much strength and integrity,” says Coel.

Writer and BAFTA-winner Hugo Blick, described the eight-part series as “a labyrinthine thriller about the prosecution of international war crimes and the personal, legal and political turmoil it ignites as well as the West’s relationship with contemporary Africa.”

“The past isn’t dead, it isn’t even past. I was never quite sure exactly what this famous quote meant but by following the fictional journey of a young black British woman on an epic and deeply personal quest to bring a Rwandan génocidaire to legal justice—now I do. And now I know just how critical, difficult and terrifying that phrase can seem to anyone in pursuit, and denial, of international criminal justice,” shared Blick

The series will also star Noma Dumezweni and Tamara Tunie, and is set to premiere on BBC Two in the U.K. and on Netflix internationally later this year.

Coel is a rising British star following the success of her hit comedy Chewing Gum, which she created, wrote and starred in. She won a BAFTA Television Award in April for best female performance in a comedy program for the show, which airs on E4 in the U.K. and Netflix in the U.S.  She also stars in the upcoming comedy musical Been So Long, which will mark her first lead role in a movie following a supporting role in sci-fi sequel Monsters: Dark Continent.

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