WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - An actor from Wilmington can be seen in the new film about the life of slave-turned-abolitionist Harriet Tubman.
Nick Basta, an instructor in the UNCW Theatre Department, plays Foxx, one of Tubman’s pursuers in Harriet.
“Well, I’m not the nicest guy in the movie, so there’s always those questions, but to be part of history on this level is pretty astounding,” he said. “I did five weeks of work on it, so I’m in it quite a bit.”
He said the role was challenging.
“It’s a difficult task," Basta said. "As an actor you have to play the hero, so you have to find the purpose of why he may go through these type of activities, so my choice was that he has to put food on the table for his family, so it’s a job.”
Still, Basta is proud to be a part of a project that shines a light on the heroism of Tubman.
“She should be on the 20 dollar bill," he said. "This woman has done a lot. Lived to 91, saved slaves, was the first person, first woman, to lead a regimen of civil war fighters.”
Basta’s next project is another historical work.
It’s one he feels a connection to: Basta is writing a biopic about the life of Yankee’s legend Yogi Berra. He said Berra faced discrimination as an Italian-American.
“It’s an Italian story; I’m Italian," he said. “And Yogi Berra was first generation, so all of these elements within the story haven’t been told too, just like the story of Harriet. It’s a very personal story to me. My great grandparents came through Ellis Island and his parents came through Ellis Island."
The project is in discussions to determine who will play Berra.
Basta is excited to get the ball rolling.
"He’s quoted more times than Shakespeare, they say,” Basta said.
No word on when we will see Basta’s Berra project on the big screen.
But to quote Berra, “It ain’t over till it’s over.”