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No Surprise. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Confirms Lupita Nyong'o Has Optioned Rights To 'Americanah'

Photo of Jai Tiggett By Jai Tiggett | Shadow and Act May 30, 2014 at 12:02PM

And the big news that Adichie shared, or hinted at, is an upcoming collaboration with actress Lupita Nyong'o...
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Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

EDITOR'S NOTE: Confirming what we announced in March, author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie made it official that Lupita Nyong'o has indeed optioned her novel Americanah. She did so during a book signing and reading of the novel, courtesy of Stylist Magazine, per the tweet above. But, really, it was quite obvious to us, given Adichie's hints in the below video interview we published 2 months ago. She all but said that Lupita had indeed optioned film rights to the novel. But now I suppose it's official. Now the uphill climb begins for Lupita, as she works towards packaging the project, making it attractive enough for the potential financiers she'll be seeking funding from. Our March post follows below...

Half of a Yellow Sun author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie had a recent interview with Arise Entertainment 360 discussing her work, her novels, and last year's TEDTalk on feminism that had such an impact, and ended up on Beyonce's album.

Of interest to our readers, about halfway through the conversation turns to Hollywood. Regarding the banner year for black actors, Adichie says:

"I attribute that to the world finally realizing the immense talent that all of these black actors and actresses have... I think the problem with that though, is that it shouldn't be remarkable... I celebrate it, but it's a shame that we have to."

And the big news that Adichie shared, or hinted at, is an upcoming collaboration with actress Lupita Nyong'o

"I'm going to do the mysterious thing and say that Lupita might be making an announcement very soon. I don't know. That announcement might be about Americanah." 

That is, Adichie's 2013 novel Americanah, which centers on a young Nigerian woman who emigrates to America for a university education. 

With what we know of Nyong'o's background in Mexico and Kenya and her education at Yale, and her triple-threat talent as a director and writer in addition to acting, this sounds right up her alley. 

And the fact that Adichie would make such a statement, even "mysteriously," indicates that this is already a done deal. 

Find the interview below. They start to discuss the adaptation around six minutes in: 

This article is related to: Lupita Nyong'o, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie


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