New Film by Gina Prince-Bythewood, Starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Is Based on Novel by Roxane Gay

An Untamed State is a book about a black woman, written by a black woman, starring a black woman and directed by a black woman. Yaaas.

Roxane Gay is honored with the Freedom to Write Award during the PEN Center USA’s 25th Annual Literary Awards Festival at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Nov. 16, 2015.
Roxane Gay is honored with the Freedom to Write Award during the PEN Center USA’s 25th Annual Literary Awards Festival at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Nov. 16, 2015. Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

Black Girl Magic done rained all over this project.

Writer and cultural critic Roxane Gay, author of the 2014 book of essays Bad Feminist, is set to have her debut novel adapted into a movie directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood and starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Deadline Hollywood reports. “To … tell a black woman’s story and have it directed by a black woman is a dream come true,” Gay tweeted Tuesday.

Gay published An Untamed State last year, and according to Deadline Hollywood, it “tells the powerful, unflinching story of a Haitian-American woman kidnapped for ransom in front of her husband and child. The novel explores the privilege that made her a target and the strength she must draw on to survive and reclaim her life.” Amazon.com calls Gay a “powerful new literary voice.”

Prince-Bythewood is best-known for directing Love and Basketball and The Secret Life of Bees. Mbatha-Raw most recently starred in Concussion and Belle and teamed up with Prince-Bythewood for Beyond the Lights.

Gay, who has been delightedly telling the Twitterverse how this whole deal came about—first she met with the production company and then she sent the novel to Prince-Bythewood—also tweeted that she trusts the director “entirely.”

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