By Tia Lynn Ivey
Y’allywood is back to shoot an ambitious high-profile television series right in the heart of Madison.
The Underground Railroad, an 11-episode Amazon limited series directed by Oscar Winner Barry Jenkins and produced by Brad Pitt’s company Plan B, will bring to life the Pulitzer Prize winning novel by Colson Whitehead.
Whitehead’s bestselling novel The Underground Railroad follows the story of “Cora,” a young slave girl a cotton plantation in Georgia.
“Life is hell for all the slaves, but especially bad for Cora; an outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is coming into womanhood—where even greater pain awaits. When Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her about the Underground Railroad, they decide to take a terrifying risk and escape,” said a statement describing the new series.
Movie Star and producer Brad Pitt has been spotted in Madison as the series shoots scenes inside the Morgan County Courthouse and outside on portions of Hancock Street and East Washington Street. Portions of both streets have been shutdown since Sunday and transformed into dirt roads to accommodate the shoot. The cast includes Thuso Mbedu, Aaron Pierre, Chase W. Dillon, William Jackson Harper, Amber Gray, and Joel Edgerton.
Filming is slated to wrap on Hancock and East Washington Streets late Tuesday and supposed to be cleared and restored by Friday November 8.
“So far, it’s been pretty smooth,” said Madison City Manager David Nunn. “There’s been some traffic issues because of the road closures but nothing too bad.”
According to Nunn, the series is another film project that Madison can be proud of that will showcase the town.
“It’s a high-profile production,” said Nunn. “Already it’s had a good bit of economic impact around town,” too.