HBO has announced they are adapting the stage show based on Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me for television, set to debut this fall.
Adapted and staged by the Apollo Theater in 2018, the network says “the special will combine elements of that production, including powerful readings from Coates’ book.” It’ll be directed by Apollo Theater Executive Producer Kamilah Forbes. Coates and Susan Kelechi Watson are also executive producers and Roger Ross Williams is producing. HBO says it it will also incorporate documentary footage from the actors’ home life, archival footage, and animation.
“Ta-Nehisi’s book is a modern literary classic that provides an essential message for our times,” says Casey Bloys, President, HBO Programming. “We are tremendously proud to bring this incredibly important event to our audiences.”
“I’ve been working with Kamilah for almost as long as I’ve been a writer,” said Ta-Nehisi Coates. “I can think of no one better to put BETWEEN THE WORLD AND ME on screen and no better home for it than HBO.”
“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,” said Kamilah Forbes. “I’m excited to collaborate again with both Ta-Nehisi and HBO on this important special event, ensuring that the powerful voices in this work and the cry for justice from the Black community continue to reach a broader audience.”
“Through BETWEEN THE WORLD AND ME, we intend to create a space of communion where Black people can metabolize our grief, celebrate our joys, and continue to amplify the current discourse regarding race and culture in our country and around the world,” said Susan Kelechi Watson. “Ta-Nehisi’s words lend themselves to an experience that is shared by so many of us. I’m thrilled to work with HBO and these brilliant minds on a special that is both timely and urgent.”
“Ta-Nehisi Coates’ BETWEEN THE WORLD AND ME is a seminal piece of literature that has pushed crucial conversations around our country and racism to the forefront of our cultural conversation,” said Roger Ross Williams. “Having witnessed Ta-Nehisi and Kamilah stage Between the World and Me, I am thrilled to be a part of bringing this powerful work and its message to HBO and an even wider audience.”
The special will air on HBO and be available to stream on HBO Max.
Photo: Courtesy of HBO