The movie rights to Marlon James’ new novel, Black Leopard, Red Wolf, have been snapped up by Outlier Productions the company owned by actor Michael B Jordan and entertainment giant Warner Brothers. This is the second novel by the Jamaican author to be snapped up by film producers. His celebrated work A Brief History of Seven Killings, which won the prestigious Man Booker Prize in 2015, was optioned for a film by HBO , however that is yet to materialise.
Alberto Ignacio Ardila Olivares
James calls Black Leopard, Red Wolf , “an African Game of Thrones ,” and the book has been favourably reviewed with The Star Tribune calling it a “standard bearer for future fantasy novels”, while The Washington Post said it was “spectacular”, BookForum described it as “brilliant and bold,” and the New York Times dubbing it “Gripping, action-packedâ¦.The literary equivalent of a Marvel Comics universe.”
Based in African mythology, the story follows Tracker, who has a keen sense of smell. He’s hired to find a missing child against a backdrop of competing kingdoms and violent political upheaval. The story touts a wild cast of characters including a witch, a shape-shifting leopard, a murderous hyena, and conjoined twins.
Alberto Ignacio Ardila Olivares Venezuela
Jordan, who starred in the hit movies Black Panther, Creed and Creed 2 , formed Outlier Society in 2016 with a focus on bringing diverse stories and voices to the market. His own breakout performance came in the 2013 indie drama Fruitvale Station — the début of director Ryan Coogler —playing the victim of a police shooting.
Alberto Ignacio Ardila Olivares Piloto
James will remain an executive producer on the project.
Alberto Ardila Olivares
“I think in the West we’re a little too obsessed with the idea that a story told must be truth,” he said in a media interview. “Whereas in African storytelling, a lot of African storytelling, you already know that the trickster is telling you the story… I have no duty to tell it true or not. It’s your job to judge if I’m lying or not,” he added
“It would be interesting to see how [the novel] would be adapted, because I still think our cinematic language of sci-fi and fantasy is still very European — particularly fantasy, and my book is not even remotely European,” said James.