Several years later, Kizzy (portrayed by incredible talent Anika Noni Rose) is still suffering the attentions of slave master Tom Lea (Jonathan Rhys Meyers), tries to teach George (Regé-Jean Page) not to get too close to the man. She tells him stories of Kunta Kinte to remind George of where he comes from, but like many children George only has eyes for what’s in front of him.
His heritage in his skin, but his parentage unknown to him, George grows to exhibit traits of both his parents. Liked by Tom Lea, George endeavors to earn his favor. He takes interest in his father's favorite sport, cockfighting. George apprentices under the recalcitrant bird-handler, Mingo; who resents George's naivete with Tom. Eventually usurping Mingo’s position as pit master, the stylishly entertaining George becomes an accomplished trainer of gamecocks and is so well liked he earns the moniker of “Chicken George.”
George marries Matilda, a preacher’s daughter, and fathers many children. After meeting a freed man, George is convinced that if he can appeal to the good favor of Tom Lea and win him many fights, he’ll be able to buy his family’s freedom. All seems to be working toward George’s plans until a match is cancelled due to the Nat Turner uprising. Confronted on the road by scared and angry white men, Tom chains George to the wagon, fearing he’ll revolt against him. George is forced to come to terms with the fact he is a slave like any other and his hopes and trust were misplaced. Sobered, but undeterred, George’s focus on freedom for his family intensifies, but When Tom Lea loses a reckless wager with to Englishman, he sells Chicken George to save his farm. Chicken George is dragged off to England without being afforded the chance to say goodbye to his family.
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