Little Rock native and Hendrix College graduate Ashlie Atkinson is to join the cast of the next Spike Lee film, “Black Klansman,” a biopic about a black detective in Colorado Springs, Colo., who climbed the ranks of the local Ku Klux Klan chapter (not to be confused with the 1966 film of the same name).
The film’s cast includes John David Washington (Denzel Washington’s son) as the titular Ron Stallworth, Adam Driver as a Jewish undercover police officer and Atkinson as Connie Kendrickson. Jordan Peele (“Get Out,” “Key & Peele”) co-produces the film, which is based on Stallworth’s biography.
Atkinson’s breakout role as Helen in playwright Neil Labute's "Fat Pig” earned her a Theater World Award in 2005 and led to a host of roles in theater, film and television: Spike Lee’s “Inside Man,” Martin Scorsese’s “The Wolf of Wall Street,” “Us & Them,” “30 Rock” and “Bored to Death,” among others.
For further proof of Atkinson’s wit and panache, revisit the Arkansas Times 2013 Inquizator interview with the actor, in which she pens a haiku, sends a letter to herself from the future and tells us what Denzel smells like.