Samuel L. Jackson to Play MLK on Broadway

He will star in The Mountaintop without Halle Berry, who reportedly had to back out because of custody issues.

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Samuel L. Jackson will make his Broadway debut this fall, starring as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Katori Hall's The Mountaintop.

Taking place on April 3, 1968, the production is described as a "gripping reimagining of events the night before the assassination of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., as he retires to Room 306 in the now famous Lorraine Motel in Memphis, after delivering his legendary 'I've Been to the Mountaintop' speech to a massive church congregation."

Jackson will portray King as he is "forced to confront his past, as well as his legacy to his people."

The Mountaintop first opened in London in 2009. It has already won an Olivier Award for best new play and two Evening Standard Awards, including for most promising playwright. It will be directed by Kenny Leon of Fences and Raisin in the Sun.

Halle Berry was originally slated to play the role of Camae, a maid at the Lorraine Motel. She was reportedly forced to pull out "due to child custody issues."

Playing the serious role of MLK on one of his final days is no small task for a Broadway rookie. But we can't think of many actors we'd trust more to ensure that the play continues to win over audiences by bringing the story to life. 

Read more at Playbill and CBS News.

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