Nigel Hawthorne, Pete Postlethwaite and Djimon Honsou have joined the cast of DreamWorks’ “Amistad,” which began production on Tuesday and is the studio’s first feature directed by co-founder Steven Spielberg.

The picture is a true story about the revolt on the Spanish slave ship Amistad and the slaves’ subsequent trial in the United States. Morgan Freeman, Anthony Hopkins and Matthew McConaughey were previously announced to star.

The picture is scheduled for release in late 1997.

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