The director made that backstage musical romance for just $7 million, after she insisted on casting emerging Gugu Mbatha-Raw over a star like Beyoncé, as a biracial singer who tries to break free from her overbearing stage mom (Minnie Driver). That meant that Relativity Media, not Sony, released the independent film — with a smaller marketing spend. But Prince-Bythewood made the movie her way. She always does.
When the director met with Skydance on “The Old Guard,” she knew that she had to nail her pitch for how