Our favorite cult film, Dear White People, will reach audiences worldwide as a new original series on Netflix. The digital network has given a 10-episode order to a half-hour comedy series based on the highly acclaimed indie film that took theaters by storm in 2014. Simien will write the adaptation and direct the first episode of the series. He will also serve as executive producer alongside the original movie’s producer, Stephanie Allain Bray (Beyond the Lights, Dear White People).
“Justin is a gifted storyteller whose bold, unique vision is perfectly suited to Netflix. His original film Dear White People announced the arrival of a fresh, creative voice that had everyone talking, and we’re excited to have Justin create this new series for our members worldwide.” – Cindy Holland, VP Original Content, Netflix
The Dear White People movie satire, was written, directed, and produced by Simien, who made the initial concept trailer using his tax refund. The trailer went viral on YouTube, garnering over a million views and $50,000 in donations from fans around the world. The crowd funded movie went on to win the Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Talent at Sundance and an Independent Spirit award for Best First Screenplay.
“During the film’s release, I had the pleasure to speak with hundreds of students and faculty across a variety of college campuses dealing with these very issues in real time,” Simien said. I’m so grateful to have this platform, not only to give a voice to those too often unheard in our culture, but to also tell great stories from new points of views.” – Justin Simien
Stephanie Allain Bray is a seasoned producer who has been working in Hollywood for almost two decades. She was the studio executive behind classic films in the 90’s such as Boyz in the Hood and Poetic Justice, and went on to produce films such as Hustle & Flow, Something New starring Sanaa Lathan, Dear White People, and most recently produced Beyond the Lights directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood. She is currently working on Crushed, a digital pilot in pre-production at Hulu, that revolves around a black family as they find success in the wine-making business in Napa, California. Allain is also the Director of the LA Film Festival.
Devon Shepard (House of Lies) and Julia Lebedev (Dear White People) will also serve as executive producers for the film that will be produced by Lionsgate, whose sister company Roadside Attractions released the original film in 2014.
This is exciting news! Be sure to check out the original trailer below!