"The Gabby Douglas Story," which is set to air on Lifetime in 2014, is currently filming in Canada.
After a few open calls in select cities, the lucky actress to play Gabby was officially announced Monday, alongside a second actress who'll split the role chronicling Gabby's journey from age six through her teen years.
Imani Hakim, who you may recognize as Tonya from "Everybody Hates Chris," will play teenage Gabby, while Sydney Mikayla will play the young "Flying Squirrel." Regina King is on board to play the role of her mother, Natalie Hawkins, and S. Epatha Merkerson will play Gabby's grandmother.
Check out this quick synopsis of the movie:
A prodigy from a very young age, Gabby Douglas originally made her mark on the world of competitive gymnastics at age eight. She won numerous state championship titles in her age group throughout her early competitive career. While her star was fast rising In The Arena, Gabby and her family faced economic challenges at home and she made the difficult decision to leave her mother Natalie (King), three siblings and grandmother (Merkerson) in Virginia Beach and move to Des Moines, Iowa, to train with renowned coach Liang Chow (Brian Tee, The Wolvernine) to pursue her dream of Olympic glory. Buoyed by her early success, dedication and unyielding love from her family, Gabby made it onto the 2012 U.S. Women’s Gymnastics team, with whom she faced intense competition in the London Games. Her sacrifice and perseverance were triumphantly rewarded with Team Competition and Individual All-round gold medals, placing Gabby and her teammates – known as “The Fierce Five” -- among the world’s all-time greats in gymnastics.
Hakim received a swarm of congratulatory messages on Twitter following the announcement. A quick look through her Instagram photos shows how much she's grown since her days as Tonya on "Everybody Hates Chris." She also has a striking resemblance to Gabby!
So I guess the word is out. My big sister @anakih1 is starring in a Documentary on Gabby Douglass. 👏❤ I hope you're having fun & I miss you!
— Justice Domingo (@JusticeDomingo) September 16, 2013
The movie's casting director, Tracy "Twinkie" Byrd, who is responsible for casting movies like Notorious, Sparkle, and Fruitvale Station, sent the young actress a special note of encouragement via Twitter.
@anakih1 CONGRATS & Make it Great Honey!! Okay??
— Tracy Twinkie Byrd (@Twinkie_Byrd) September 16, 2013
This announcement is the latest in the list of biopics set to come to life through film and TV in the coming year, including TLC biopic, "CrazySexyCool," which premieres on VH1 next month.
Check out a trailer, plus other legends set to get the movie treatment in the slideshow below.
Vh1 released the first trailer to the network's upcoming TLC biopic on Thursday. Called "CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story," the movie stars Keke Palmer as Rozanda "Chilli" Thomas, Lil Mama as Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes, and Drew Sidora as Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins. The new trailer features TLC's hit songs, "Waterfalls" and "No Scrubs.
S. Epatha Merkerson says she's been cast to play Jesse L. Martin's mother in the upcoming Marvin Gaye biopic "Sexual Healing." Her manager Bob McGowan says production begins in Luxembourg in late March.
"Selma," the Martin Luther King Jr. biopic that centers on the 1965 voting rights efforts, is now in the hands of Ava DuVernay, who in 2012 became the first African-American woman to take home the Sundance Film Festival's directing prize.
According to Variety, Chadwick Boseman, who broke onto the scene this year as Jackie Robinson in "42," will play [James Brown.] Tate Taylor ("The Help," "Pretty Ugly People") is on board to direct a script by Jez and John Henry Butterworth ("Fair Game").
The upcoming Jimi Hendrix biopic "All Is By My Side" will debut at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival, and the TIFF website has released a new photo of Outkast alum André 3000 as the iconic rock musician.
Finally opening in theaters after premiering at Toronto Film Festival back in 2011 is the long awaited film ‘Winnie Mandela,’ starring Academy Award winner Jennifer Hudson (‘Dreamgirls’) in the title role.
After making history, and penning two books about her life, there's now a biopic in the works about the amazing (albeit short) life of Olympic gold medalist Gabrielle Douglas. "The Gabby Douglas Story," which is set to air on Lifetime in 2014, is currently filming in Canada.