A film based on writer, activist, longtime vegan athlete, and youth worker Jarid Manos’ memoir “Ghetto Plainsman,” is in the works, with Jordan Walker-Pearlman (“The Visit”) directing from a script he co-wrote with Carlton Jordan, Manos, and Elizabeth Hunter.
Walker-Pearlman is also producing with Jordan (creator of the web series “Love Handles” and producer on reality shows “#TheWestbrooks” and “Big Freedia: Queen Of Bounce”) who is also developing a teen musical film with Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins’ recently-launched production company called ATLA.
Karenna Gore (daughter of Al Gore, marking her first involvement in a feature film) and Barry Johnson (a former Obama Administration adviser, who is also arranging financing for the project) are executive producing the film adaptation of “Ghetto Plainsman” which is described (via Amazon) as a gritty, raw and spiritual chronicle of one man’s triumph over humiliation, self-defeat, anger and violence, telling a gripping story of his evolution.
“Jarid Manos finds comfort on a curb or in the shadows of a deserted street. He sees the world as a constant war zone filled with hatred and ugliness. He burns with backlash resentment. To complicate matters, he is tormented by a self-loathing denial of his sexuality and wants to kill it out of him. From coastal Texas to an 80s-early 90s New York City under siege by drugs and AIDS, to a xenophobic L.A. wasteland divided by race and class, all the way out into the stricken Great Plains, Manos can barely see the door that Earth has always held open for us to heal, until … at his last gasp. It is inside the eye of this storm that Manos finally hears the inner voice: Where are you right now? His personal healing transformation is a model for the new Ecological Health Movement.”
The book was published in 2007 to mostly strong reviews, and can be picked up at your local online or offline bookstore. Amazon is selling it for both the Kindle and on paperback. Pick up a copy here.
Says Johnson about the project: “This movie is vital, refreshing, and timely for the enlightenment it seeds and the stereotypes it uproots about human relations, sexual identity, ecological activism, and the connectedness of it all.”
Walker-Pearlman adds, “This story, Jarid’s experience as relayed in the book, is three decades of an American life. It’s difficult to describe the breath of emotions of it in a few words, but I passionately believe we’ll be able to do it on screen.”
Jordan said, “’Ghetto Plainsman’ is unique due to its stories of redemption thorough environmental activism and characters of color. I hope while following Jarid’s evolution from hustler to activist, it can inspire audiences to be woken to the state of the planet and all living things.”
Walker-Pearlman is a nephew of Gene Wilder who died earlier this week, and who helped raise him and introduce him to the world of arts and entertainment, while actor Sidney Poitier served as an early mentor.
Principal photography is set to begin this fall in New York and the Great Plains.