Viola Davis. Picture: AP

Viola Davis and Lupita Nyong'o will play mother and daughter in new drama movie 'The Woman King', which has been acquired by TriStar Pictures.

TriStar Pictures have acquired the worldwide rights to the forthcoming film, which is based on true events which took place at the Kingdom of Dahomey, an African kingdom which existed from around 1600 to 1894 until the last king was defeated by the French. 

Hannah Minghella, TriStar president - who will oversee the project alongside Nicole Brown - said: "'The Woman King' is the powerful true story of an extraordinary mother-daughter relationship.

"And there's no one more extraordinary than Viola Davis and Lupita Nyong'o to bring them to life."

Davis will portray Nanisca, a general of all-female military unit the Amazons, while Nyong'o will portray her daughter Nawi. The pair fought French forces and nearby tribes. 

Davis and her husband Julius Tennon will co-produce the motion picture along with Cathy Schulman, who insisted the true story behind the film's inspiration is one of "history's greatest forgotten" tales. 

She said: "'Black Panther' just showed us how the power of imagination and lore could reveal a world without gender and racial stereotypes. 

"'The Woman King' will tell one of history's greatest forgotten stories from the real world in which we live, where an army of African warrior women staved off slavery, colonialism and inter-tribal warfare to unify a nation."

Maria Bello will also produce the project, which was based on her original idea. 

Davis is currently playing Annalise Keating in 'How to Get Away with Murder' on the small screen, and is due to appear in heist thriller movie 'Widows' in November. 

Nyong'o is appearing in superhero film 'Black Panther' and recently played Maz Kanata in 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi'.