A Brief History of Seven Killings, Marlon James’ award-winning novel focused on the social and political issues of Jamaica throughout the last century, is getting an Amazon adaptation, and it looks like they’ve found the perfect director.
Melina Matsoukas is known in the industry for directing episodes of Insecure and Master of None (after making a name for herself directing music videos for the likes of Rihanna and Beyonce). And she’s excited to be involved in the project, especially as James will be adapting his own novel for the series. From THR, who reported the story exclusively:
“A Brief History of Seven Killings is a complex story that needs to be told, about a people whose voices need to be heard,” Matsoukas said Monday in a statement. “It’s been my dream to bring this story to life onscreen since reading the first line of Marlon’s book. I am deeply honored to be entrusted with this tapestry of stories so entrenched in roots, reggae, race, mysticism and politics, while working alongside Marlon to ensure an authentic portrayal of his words.”
THR goes on to summarize the novel, which looks like it’ll make for an intense, deeply emotional series:
Seven Killings begins with the attempted assassination of reggae icon Bob Marley and explores its aftermath, looking at one vital day in multiple time periods. The novel looked at Jamaican politics, poverty, race, class and the volatile relationship between the U.S. and the Caribbean, and traced the connection between CIA efforts to destabilize a left-wing Jamaican government in the 1970s to the brutal realities of gang wars in the Kingston ghettos and their spread to New York in the 1980s.
Malcolm Spellman, a writer on Empire, will be showrunning the project.
James’ next project is epic fantasy series The Dark Star Trilogy. The first book, Black Leopard, Red Wolf, is expected to be released in fall 2018.