Fences is a 2016 American drama film directed by Denzel Washington based on his Pulitzer Prize winning play. Let’s see some amazing facts and trivia about it!
1.Previous attempts to adapt August Wilson’s Fences for the screen have been fruitless, partly due to Wilson’s insistence on utilizing an African-American director.
2. In a 2013 interview with Empire, Denzel Washington expressed his intention to star in and direct an adaptation of Fences, reprising his role from the 2010 Broadway revival of the play produced by Scott Rudin.
3. On January 28, 2016, it was reported that Rudin, Washington and Todd Black would produce a film adaptation of the play, directed by Washington and starring Washington and Viola Davis, reprising their roles from the 2010 revival that garnered both actors Tony Awards.
4. Playwright and screenwriter Tony Kushner came aboard to build on a draft written by Wilson before his death in 2005.
5. However, Wilson is the only credited screenwriter for the film.
6. On April 4, 2016, Mykelti Williamson, Jovan Adepo, Russell Hornsby, Stephen Henderson, and Saniyya Sidney joined the cast, with Williamson, Hornsby, and Henderson also reprising their roles from the 2010 production.
7. On April 25, 2016, it was reported that Fences had begun filming in Pittsburgh.
8. Charlotte Bruus Christensen was the director of photography, David Gropman was the production designer, Sharen Davis was the costume designer, Hughes Winborne edited the film, Sean Devereaux was the visual effects supervisor, and Marcelo Zarvos composed the film’s score.
9. The film was scheduled for a limited release on December 16, 2016, before opening wide on December 25.
10. In September 2016, it was scheduled for only a wide release on December 25, 2016, before on December 5 again being slated for a limited release on December 16.
11 Fences opened in two theaters in New York and Los Angeles, and was expected to gross $50–$75,000 per theater in its limited-opening weekend. It ended up making a total of $128,000, good for a per-theater average of $32,000.
12. When the film goes wide on Christmas Day, it is expected to gross $9 million in its first two days.
13. Fences received critical acclaim reviews from critics. On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 93% based on 103 reviews, with a weighted average score of 7.9/10.
14. Fences was originally a 1983 play by American playwright August Wilson. Set in the 1950s, it is the sixth in Wilson’s ten-part “Pittsburgh Cycle”. Like all of the “Pittsburgh” plays, Fences explores the evolving African-American experience and examines race relations, among other themes. The play won the 1987 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the 1987 Tony Award for Best Play.
15. August Wilson insisted that a film adaptation of the play be directed by an African American.
16. This is the third theatrical film to be directed by Denzel Washington.
17. Viola Davis’s performance is campaigned as supporting during awards season. This placement was seen as category fraud by some awards pundits. In an interview with Deadline, Denzel Washington said he disagreed with the placement, but that is was Davis’ own decision, which would improve her chances of winning.
18. In the 2015 film Lila & Eve, a recurring line is that Viola Davis’s character has ‘a date with Denzel’ meaning she’s staying home watching movies starring Denzel Washington. One year later she actually plays his wife in this film.
19. When Paramount Studios originally had the film rights to the play in the 1990s, Eddie Murphy was being considered for the male lead.
20. This was playwright August Wilson’s first ever screenplay of one of his own acclaimed plays.
21. Denzel Washington felt comfortable with the source material since he had been involved with 114 performances of the play on Broadway.