According to the UK Sun, Beyoncé is developing a film on Saartjie Baartman, an African woman forced into becoming a European freak show attraction because of her large derriere. Per the British tabloid, Bey’s is hoping this will be the roll to win her an Oscar.
Mrs. Carter will reportedly go all in with this one, starring in the film and penning the screenplay. “Beyoncé is desperate to be taken seriously as an actress,” says an alleged source. “Even though she’s had a string of well-received movies, she still feels her breakthrough role is yet to come. She now wants to write a screenplay that gains her respect — and hopefully awards — from the film industry, and thinks Saartjie’s story could be her ticket.”
No idea how this story was born, or if it’s even real. The “Bey’s wants an Oscar” thing has been circling since Jennifer Hudson took home a Oscar gold guy for Dreamgirls, but the very idea of her taking on the Baartman role has some South Africans upset.
Meanwhile, here’s more information about Baartman:
She is was born in South Africa in 1789, and was sold to a Scottish doctor who took her to London in her 20s. There, he paraded Baartman around for having “exotic” features” including her robust backside.
Baartman was put on exhibit in London under the name Hottentot Venus. Around 1810, an abolitionist attempted to rescue her on grounds that she hadn’t consented to being treated
as a human exhibition. (Baartman signed a “contract ” written in Dutch, the language she spoke fluently, allowing her to be treated as both a domestic slave and a freak show attraction in England and Ireland). The case went to court, but was dismissed after Baartman was privately interviewed by an attorney and said she was fine with the public exhibition, had not been sexually abused, and understood that she would receive very little pay.
The validity of Baartmen’s statements have been questioned however, as they grossly contradict eyewitness statements. Nonetheless, Baartman was sold again this time to a Frenchman. She traveled with him to France in 1814 where she was exhibited by an animal trainer for over a year.
She died penniless in 1815, yet even in death, Baartman had no rights. Having already refused scientists requests to pay to study her body when she was alive, upon her passing, Baartman’s remains were dissected at the George Cuvier’s laboratory at the Museum of Natural History. Her brain and skeleton were put on display for more than a century. It wasn’t until 2002 that France returned Baartman’s remains after receiving pressure from South Africa leaders.
She is buried in her homeland “at the top of a hill overlooking a river and citrus orchards owned by the descendants of a family that took part in the genocide of her people.”