Wonder Woman of the Week: Ava DuVernay


This week filmmaker and all-around boss Ava DuVernay gets our Wonder Woman of the Week crown for her new Netflix project about the Central Park Five.

We’re rounding out the week with a wonder woman behind the camera. Ava DuVernay gets our big time props this week as it was announced Thursday that the Selma director has signed on to write, direct and produce what’s sure to be an amazing mini-series about the Central Park Five for Netflix.

DuVernay has worked with the streaming network before. Last year, they teamed up to create 13th. An Oscar-nominated documentary about the 13th amendment, it focuses on how the U.S. prison network is systematically stacked against black communities. DuVernay has a powerful perspective and artistic eye for telling stories of racial injustice. That eye will definitely come in handy for this new project.

If you’re not familiar, the Central Park Five refers to the five black men wrongly accused and convicted of raping a white jogger in Central Park in 1989 whose sentences were eventually overturned in 2014. The topic got a feature documentary from filmmaker Ken Burns in 2012, but DuVernay’s version, co-produced by Oprah’s Harpo Films, will spend each of its five scripted parts focused on one of the accused.

DuVernay said in a statement that the case has “riveted her for more than two decades”:

"“In their journey, we witness five innocent young men of color who were met with injustice at every turn — from coerced confessions to unjust incarceration to public calls for their execution by the man who would go on to be the president of the United States.”"

Next: Little Women on PBS: meet the just-announced cast

We’re riveted, too, Ms. DuVernay, and we can’t wait to see what you create.