Netflix has just announced that it’s given a series order to an adaptation of Justin Simien’s pithy feature film, Dear White People. The film saw Creed’s Tessa Thompson play an Ivy Leaguer who, along with other black students, was committed to putting her white, privileged classmates on blast. Its incisive satire deconstructed the post-racial America fantasy, and now the story will be expanded into a 10-episode comedy series.
Simien, who wrote and directed the original film, will write the series as well as direct its first episode. The writer/director/producer said his research for the film revealed just how prevalent these issues are, so he’s looking forward to delving further into them in his Netflix show.
“During the film’s release, I had the pleasure to speak with hundreds of students and faculty across a variety of college campuses dealing with these very issues in real time. I’m so grateful to have this platform—not only to give a voice to those too often unheard in our culture, but to also tell great stories from new points of views. From day one, Lionsgate has been remarkably supportive of the vision for the show, and working with Netflix is every bit as harmonious as I’d imagined it would be. Bringing this show to such a vibrant platform is an honor I don’t take lightly.”
In a joint press release, Netflix touts Simien as “a gifted storyteller whose bold, unique vision is perfectly suited” to its platform. The Dear White People series will be executive produced by two of the film’s producers, Stephanie Allain and Julia Lebedev, as well as Devon Shepard (House Of Lies). Lionsgate, whose Roadside Attractions company released the original film in 2014, will produce the series. Dear White People is expected to premiere in 2017.