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Stars of 'The Woman King' look incredible on the September digital cover of Essence

The still shot portrays Viola Davis, Thuso Mbedu, Lashana Lynch, Adrienne Warren, and Sheila Atim wearing all black fits with pops of red and gold. Stylist Corey Stokes and photographer Lelanie Foster achieved their creative vision while capturing these beautiful women.

The Woman King,’ made its reign on September 16. It is an action-pact film about the Agojie, one of the most feared groups of female warriors committed to protecting their West African kingdom of Dahomey, which is modern-day Benin. General Nanisca, played by Oscar winner Viola Davis, trains the next generation of recruits and prepares them for battle. The film has tremendous character arches, great action, extreme emotional depths, and self-discovery that audiences have gravitated to.

Lashana Lynch, who plays Izugi, is featured in the issue wearing Givenchy.

Thuso Mbedu, who plays Nawi, was shot wearing Erdem.

“The beauty in what we have learned from each other because of our individual lived experiences, and the beauty that we present when we come together, we present what the world has never seen before,” said Adrienne Warren during “Essence Uncovered,” a roundtable discussion with the cast lead by director Gina Prince-Bythewood.

Warren, who plays Ode, is featured below wearing Miu Miu.

Director Prince-Bythewood was shot wearing AZ Factory and Fear of God.

“There’s no words to describe the journey, the sweat, the blood, the war, that it is being a Black artist, that is being a Black female artist,” said Viola Davis during the roundtable discussion. Davis was shot wearing Alexander McQueen for the September issue.

What helped her get through tough moments while filming was "remembering that it was bigger than just us as individuals, but then also seeing that visually. Having that represented, I’ve just never seen so many dark-skinned women in the same frame. I’ve just never seen it. All looking the way we looked. Doing what we were doing,” said Sheila Atim during the roundtable discussion.

Atim, who plays Amenza, is shown wearing Sergio Hudson.


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