HBO Max, WarnerMedia’s upcoming streaming service, has added another must-see show: an adaptation of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s 2013 novel Americanah, starring Lupita Nyong’o and written by Danai Gurira.
It will be a limited series, with Nyong’o starring as Ifemelu, a Nigerian woman who moves to the United States for a better life and must navigate her new identity there, as well as a long-distance relationship with Obinze, who attempts to come to the States but is denied a visa post-9/11. An adaptation, with Nyong’o attached, has been in the works since 2014 when Selma‘s David Oyelowo was rumored to play Obinze.
Nyong’o’s Black Panther co-star Gurira will write the pilot and be showrunner for the 10-episode series. “Through Americanah, Chimamanda brought the African female voice into mainstream consciousness in an unprecedented way,” Gurira said in a statement. “It is intellectually incisive, indicting, yet full of humor, and riddled with humanity. She makes unheard voices familiar, universal and yet palpably specific.”
Americanah does not yet have a release date. HBO Max is set to debut in 2020 and has already announced it will be the exclusive home of Friends, as well as CW spinoffs like Katy Keene and a Gossip Girl reboot.