With the latest Star Wars installment now in his rearview, actor John Boyega is shifting his priorities to bring more diverse content to American audiences.
Variety reports that the 27-year-old’s U.K.-based production company, UpperRoom Productions, is joining forces with streaming media giant Netflix to develop film projects that will explore a wealth of stories about a place we all hold near and dear: The motherland.
“I am thrilled to partner with Netflix to develop a slate of non-English language feature films focused on African stories, and my team and I are excited to develop original material,” Boyega said in a tweet announcing the venture. “We are proud to grow this arm of our business with a company that shares our vision.”
On the heels of the release of Netflix’s first fully produced African original series, Queen Sono, the deal affirms the company’s commitment to expanding its scope beyond the tired tropes being churned out of Hollywood.
“Africa has a rich history in storytelling, and for Netflix, this partnership with John and UpperRoom presents an opportunity to further our investment in the continent while bringing unique African stories to our members both in Africa and around the world,” David Kosse, Netflix’s VP of international film, said.
Since becoming a household name with his breakthrough performance as Finn in 2015’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the Peckham, London, England-born thespian collected his first producer credit with 2018’s Pacific Rim: Uprising before serving as an executive producer on 2019’s South African crime-thriller God is Good. The accompanying soundtrack will also be released on his record label, UpperRoom Records.
Much love to Boyega for not only killing it on screen but leveraging his career to create opportunities for others.