HBO Is Adapting Ta-Nehisi Coates's 'Between the World and Me'

Erica Gonzales
·2 mins read
Photo credit: Getty / Penguin Random House
Photo credit: Getty / Penguin Random House

From Harper's BAZAAR

  • Between the World and Me, the stage production based on Ta-Nehisi Coates's best-selling novel, will be adapted into a special HBO program.

  • Award-winning director Kamilah Forbes, also the executive producer for the Apollo Theater, is at the helm.

  • It will be available to view on HBO and HBO Max this fall.

One of Ta-Nehisi Coates's lauded works is headed to HBO.

According to a press release, the network is adapting Between the World and Me, a stage play based on Coates's 2015 best seller, for the small screen. The special program, directed by Kamilah Forbes, will be released this fall on HBO and its streaming service, HBO Max.

Between the World and Me is a seminal story that Coates fashions as a letter to his son, invoking personal experience and reporting to examine how the nation's history and success thrives on racism. It was first adapted for the stage in 2018 at the famous Apollo Theater in Harlem, New York. Forbes, an award-winning director and producer who is also the executive producer for the Apollo, directed the play. She'll return to direct the HBO version as well. Coates and Susan Kelechi Watson (This Is Us) are executive-producing.

Casting details are still unconfirmed, but HBO's rendition will include documentary footage of the actors' home life, archival footage, and animation. The network says production will follow COVID-19 guidelines.

"As people across our country continue to speak out about violent, systemic racism and the urgent need for tangible change, Ta-Nehisi's words resonate as strongly today as they did five years ago," Forbes said in a statement. She added that she'll ensure "that the powerful voices in this work and the cry for justice from the Black community continue to reach a broader audience."

HBO will be making a donation to both the Apollo Theater and Howard University, Coates's alma mater, in honor of the project.

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