Matthew McConaughey on Set of 'Free State of Jones'
Texas-born Matthew McConaughey, who starred in last year’s award-winning “Dallas Buyer’s Club” and HBO’s “True Detective,” might have been in Los Angeles at the Oscars last night, but it’s back to the other La. for the actor this week as he films “Free State of Jones.”
Set during the Civil War, the film will tell the story of Newt Knight, a Southern farmer who led the secession of Jones County, Mississippi, from the Confederacy. McConaughey plays real-life figure Knight, who represented poor white farmers in the creation of a “Free State of Jones.” “The Americans” star Keri Russell has been announced as playing his wife, Serena Knight, and Gugu Mbatha-Raw will play Rachel, the former slave Knight falls in love with. His relationship with Rachel established the region’s first mixed-race community, and Knight continued his fight into the post-war period, becoming legendary for his rebellion.
McConaughey visited Jones County and was pictured in Jackson, Mississippi, and Mobile, Alabama, earlier this month. On Saturday, he was pictured on set outside New Orleans looking pretty grizzly with a beard and tattered vest. Casting calls for the film have drawn extras from all over South Louisiana for filming expected to continue this week and next, asking them to “stop all grooming from now until the shoot.”
We’ll be posting updates throughout filming and are also working on a travel guide of sites in Jones County and Laurel, Mississippi, so stay tuned for more.