Anika Noni Rose (Dreamgirls) heads a roster of actors now set alongside Jill Scott for the Weinstein Co. television-movie The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, according to Variety.
The film, directed by Anthony Minghella, is expected to launch a full television series, but there is no network commitment as yet. Minghella (The English Patient, Cold Mountain) wrote the script along with screenwriter Richard Curtis.
The bestselling Ladies books by Alexander McCall Smith center on Precious Ramotswe (Scott), proprietor of the only female-owned detective agency in the African nation of Botswana. She sleuths, helps people solve problems and falls for the respectable owner of a local garage.
Rose will play her quirky secretary, Mma Makutsi. Other cast members announced Monday include newcomer Lucian Msamati, David Oyelowo (The Last King of Scotland), Idris Elba (28 Weeks Later), Colin Salmon (Die Another Day, Match Point) and Tony winners Winston Ntshona and John Kani.
Shooting begins Monday in Botswana. The country, which has never before hosted an entire film shoot, is said to be investing $5 million in the production.