We’ve got our Zola!
Taylour Paige, most known for her role in VH1’s Hit the Floor has been cast as the titular character in Zola, a film based on the viral Twitter thread that took the internet by storm in 2015.
Based on a 2015 Rolling Stone article, “Zola Tells All: The Real Story Behind the Greatest Stripper Saga Ever Tweeted,” the project chronicles Aziah “Zola” Wells’ wild adventure to Florida. The article, written by David Kushner, is itself based on Wells’ 148-tweet rant in which she chronicles her Florida road trip with her best friend, Jessica, Jessica’s bipolar boyfriend and Jessica’s violent pimp named Z.
Lemon director Janicza Bravo, who directed several key episodes of television, including the Juneteenth episode of Atlanta and Chapter IX (the road trip episode) of Dear White People‘s second season, is helming Zola.
James Franco was initially attached to produce and direct when the project was first announced in 2016 but is no longer associated with the project in the wake of his harassment and assault scandals.
Bravo and A24 conducted a nationwide search for Zola, which found Paige.
“I’m at a coffee shop in L.A. and in walks this girl. I’m entranced and can’t stop staring. It’s the way she sits in her body. It’s agency. It’s self-possession…everything that drew me to telling this story. One year later she auditions and I knew instantly like I knew it then. After seeing 700 girls, the one meant to be finally walked in,” said Bravo.
“Zola is an iconic, iconoclastic role, and Taylour and Janicza are exactly the people to bring the character to life. We’re thrilled to be working with them on this too-real-to-be-true saga, a defining and legendary entry in the deeply American road trip genre,” said A24.
Paige can be seen now in the big screen in White Boy Rick.
The film begins production this fall.
THR first broke this news.