Eclipsed is set in Liberia in 2003. It tells the story of five women who are held in a one-room shack by rebel group Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy (LURD). The women have been kidnapped and made into sex slaves. The playwright Danai Gurira was inspired to write the play after seeing a photograph of a female Liberian freedom fighter, Col. Black Diamond. Gurira traveled to Liberia and interviewed more than 30 women.
Danai Gurira, 38, is also an actress. She’s known for her roles on the TV shows The Walking Dead (Michonne), Treme (Jill), and in the 2007 film The Visitor starring Richard Jenkins (Zainab), among others. Gurira will appear next on the big screen in the Tupac Shakur biopic All Eyez on Me, which will be released in November. (Demetrius Shipp Jr. is playing the rapper; Gurira is playing his mother Afeni.) Gurira’s Eclipsed has been nominated for 6 Tony Awards including Best Play. The Tony Awards will be televised on June 12 at 8pm on CBS.