As reported yesterday by Deadline, the popular comic book BLACK created by Kwanza Osajeyfo, Tim Smith 3, Khary Randolph, Jamal Igle and Sarah Litt has been optioned by Studio 8 to be made into a film by Executive Vice President Jon Silk who will oversee development along with co-executive Rishi Rajan.Matteo Pizzolo (Calexit) is producing for Black Mask Studios,
BLACK had a record-breaking kickstarter campaign that launched in February of 2016 and made their $30K goal in the first 4 days. By the end of the campaign, the team had managed to earn a whopping $91K and attract Black Mask Studios for publishing and distribution. The first comic dropped a few months later September, just in time for (New York Comic Con 2016) and the team has been dropping issues monthly ever since.
The story follows Kareem Jenkins, who is shot dead by police in an all too familiar case of mistaken identity and police brutality. However, he wakes up in the ambulance very much alive and confused and ends up on the run from a mystery organization that seems to know more about his powers than he does. and a straight cop investigating his inexplicable resurrection. He is granted sanctuary by a secret society called The Project who have been harboring and training black people with superpowers for years. His powers are genetic, and only affect people of African descent.
Kareem’s powers (besides being bullet-proof) seem to be a combo of super agility, psychic-teleportation, and phasing. I also think that Kareem is also mimic with an eidetic memory, capable of duplicating anything that he is exposed to (Consciously or unconsciously). Juncture, part mentor and part C/O puts Kareem on a team with other powered Project members and sends them on missions, but when one of their own get locked up by The Project, Kareem questions Juncture’s leadership and goes on the run in search of the truth. The comic just finished its 6 issue run this week.
At the beginning of the year, I interviewed the Black team at the Schomburg Black Comic Book Fest and we spoke about how they came up with the concept for the comic and where they envisioned the story going and even then they admitted that they originally were thinking about a 3 book run, but since Black has become so popular, they were expanding their plans a bit.
I’d say that planning has paid off!
No word on who might direct, or about when casting begins, but both Smith and Osajeyfo have signed on as co-producers, so I’m sure that the project will stay close to what the creators intended.
Studio 8 was created in 2014 by former Warner Bros Executive Jeff Robinov and also optioned the comic book Scout, by Timothy Truman in the fall of 2016.
You can purchase all 6 issues of BLACK today on Comixology
• Have you read BLACK? Who do you think should star in the movie?