And for his next trick, Oscar-winning director Barry Jenkins—you know, the person who wrote a little film called Moonlight—will pen and direct an adaptation of James Baldwin’s If Beale Street Could Talk. According to Variety, Annapurna and Plan B (the production company behind Moonlight) will produce the film.
[Insert our unanimous squeals of excitement here.]
Similar to Baldwin’s book, the film will tell the story of Tish, “a newly engaged Harlem woman who races against the clock to prove her lover’s innocence while carrying their first born child,” writes Variety. Jenkins reportedly began writing the screenplay in 2013 around the same time he wrote Moonlight, and has since teamed up with the Baldwin Estate.
“James Baldwin is a man of and ahead of his time; his interrogations of the American consciousness have remained relevant to this day,” Jenkins told Variety. “To translate the power of Tish and Fonny’s love to the screen in Baldwin’s image is a dream I’ve long held dear. Working alongside the Baldwin Estate, I’m excited to finally make that dream come true.”
Gloria Karefa-Smart, Baldwin’s sister, added: “We are delighted to entrust Barry Jenkins with this adaptation. Barry is a sublimely conscious and gifted filmmaker, whose medicine for melancholy impressed us so greatly that we had to work with him.”
Production is slated to begin in October.