Having optioned Sam Greenlee’s spy novel The Spook Who Sat By The Door in the summer of 2018 for a potential TV series, Lee Daniel’s production company has now named Leigh Dana Jackson to adopt the CIA tale for the small screen, I’ve learned. The 24: Legacy producer and Raising Dion co-EP will executive producer the intended series, as well as write it.
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This new TSWSBTD is currently in development at the now Disney-owned John Landgraf-run cabler.
Having been born in 1969 as an acclaimed novel of the first African-American brought on board by the Agency and the tokenism and discrimination at the heart of that hire, the often scathing and provocative TSWSBTD was also made into a controversial 1973 film. That big screen TSWSBTD was penned by Greenlee and directed by Trouble Man helmer Ivan Dixon.
If the 2019 LDE and Fox 21 Television Studios project gets a pilot order, LDE have slated The Last Purge director Gerard McMurry to be behind the camera
The first project to come out of Lee Daniels Entertainment’s Inclusion Fund, this TSWSBTD will be EP’d by the Precious director and Marc Velez, who heads up the TV unit of LDE. Daniels re-upped his 2015 overall FOX TV deal last year. Amidst a number of projects on in various stages, he is currently is in post-production on the Amazon pilot for the Whitney Cummings co-created Good People.
A co-EP on AppleTV+’s upcoming Foundation too, Leigh Dana Jackson was repped on the The Spook Who Sat By The Door deal by WME, Gotham Group and attorney Michael Schenkman. McMurry is repped by the soon to going public Endeavor-owned WME, Artists First and attorney Bianca Levin.