Lakeith Stanfield is set to star in a feature film adaptation of American-Nigerian chef Kwame Onwuachi’s memoir, “Notes From a Young Black Chef,” with A24 on board to finance the film.
Randy McKinnon will adapt the script from the memoir, which was penned by Onwuachi and Joshua David Stein. Knopf recently acquired the publishing rights to the memoir, and the film rights were snapped up shortly afterwards.
Stephen “Dr” Love will produce, with Stanfield and Colin Stark executive producing. No director is yet attached.
The story follows Onwuachi’s unprecedented journey from childhood in the Bronx with a mostly single mother to opening a fine-dining restaurant in Washington D.C. at the age of 26. The story encompasses the extreme highs and lows of his path to becoming a chef in a mostly white, elitist industry, including financing his first catering business by selling candy on the subway, appearing on “Top Chef,” and his first restaurant, Shaw Bijou in D.C., closing just 11 weeks after its opening.
Stanfield has been on a roll over the last year, starring in several films including “Sorry to Bother You” and the upcoming thriller “Knives Out” along with the FX series “Atlanta.” He recently wrapped production on Universal’s “The Photograph” and also has A24’s “Uncut Gems” set to premiere this year.
McKinnon has set up feature projects with Annapurna, Disney and Paramount. He also wrote for the Netflix show “Chambers” and Simon Kinberg’s upcoming Apple series “War of the Worlds.”
Love’s credits include the upcoming “They Cloned Tyrone” for Netflix, “Assisted Living” for Paramount, and Steven Caple Jr.’s debut feature “The Land.” He is represented by CAA and Morris Yorn.
CAA brokered the deal on behalf of Onwuachi, Stanfield, McKinnon, and Love. Onwuachi is also represented by Lori Galvin at Aevitas Creative Management and Stanfield by Stark Management and Ginsburg Daniels Kallis LLP. McKinnon, who is managed by Grandview, is also represented by Jackoway Austen Tyerman Wertheimer et al, and Love is also represented by Morris Yorn.
(Pictured: Lakeith Stanfield, Kwame Onwuachi)