Lionsgate nabbed the rights to “White Bird: A Wonder Story,” a forthcoming graphic novel from author R.J. Palacio. The studio recently adapted her popular book “Wonder” into a feature film starring Jacob Tremblay and Julia Roberts.
News of the acquisition comes as “White Bird” hits bookstores Tuesday. The novel centers on a young Jewish girl hidden away by a boy and his family in Nazi-occupied France during World War II. Recounted by Grandmere to her grandson, Julian (a character first introduced to audiences in “Wonder”), the story demonstrates the power of kindness to change hearts, build bridges, and even save lives.
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“Lionsgate is enormously proud of our association with world class writers who speak from the heart and soul and with a powerful, authentic voice,” Nathan Kahane, Lionsgate’s Motion Picture Group president said in a statement. “There can be no more important, hopeful or inspirational message today than those found in R.J.’s books. She is an extraordinary talent. ‘White Bird,’ like ‘Wonder,’ is about taking risks, taking a stand and the power of kindness.”
Palacio said, “The team at Lionsgate values artists and storytellers and has been crucial to expanding the fan community surrounding ‘Wonder.’ They have been enormously supportive as I have been writing ‘White Bird’ and I could not feel more secure that my new graphic novel is in the right creative hands at the right studio.”
“Wonder,” produced by David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman, generated over $300 million at the global box office. Hoberman and Lieberman will also produce “White Bird.”
Palacio is represented by Howie Sanders of Anonymous Content and Alyssa Eisner Henkin, of Trident Media Group. James Myers will oversee “White Bird” for Lionsgate.