Oscar winning Kenyan-Mexican actress Lupita Nyong'o is teaming up with Brad Pitt to produce the on screen version of Americanah, a prize-winning novel by prominent Nigerian writer and author of Half of a Yellow Sun, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
Nyong'o said she was honoured to be able to bring the book to life as a movie: Page after page, I was struck by Ifemelu and Obinze's stories, whose experiences as African immigrants are so specific and also so imminently relatable. It is a thrilling challenge to tell a truly international story so full of love, humour and heart."
The film will be funded by Pitts Plan B production company which also produced 12 Years a Slave.
Americanah tells the story of a young Nigerian couple, Ifemelu and Obinze, who leave their military-ruled country for the West. While the academically successful Ifemelu goes to America, Obinze leads a risky, undocumented life in London. Fifteen years later, they are able to reunite in a newly democratic Nigeria.
The novel has received a number of awards including winner of the 2013 National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction and The Chicago Tribune 2013 Heartland Prize for Fiction. It has also featured as one of The New York Timess Ten Best Books of the Year, an NPR Great Reads Book, a Washington Post Notable Book, a Seattle Times Best Book, an Entertainment Weekly Top Fiction Book, a Newsday Top 10 Book, and a Goodreads Best of the Year pick.