Barry Jenkins to Direct Limited Series ‘Underground Railroad’ for Amazon Studios
The Underground Railroad is a Pullitzer Prize winning novel written by Colson Whitehead. A month before winning the Pullitzer, Amazon Studios purchased the rights to adapt it into a live action series. Now, a report from Deadline confirms that Oscar winner Barry Jenkins has taken on the task of directing all 11 episodes of the limited series.
Barry is most known for directing the Oscar winning film Moonlight which told the story of a young black male coming to terms with his sexuality and manhood in three stages of his life. The film garnered critical acclaim and proved Jenkins’ ability to fuse drama and nuance into a seamless and engaging story.
The Underground Railroad is a blend of history and fantasy in its depiction of a mythical underground train that transports slaves across an alternate America. The story centers on a young slave girl named Cora who works on a cotton plantation in Georgia. When a young stranger named Caesar comes into town and tells Cora about the Underground Railroad, they decide to risk it all and escape.
The story is a beautiful, fictional reimagining that depicts engineers and conductors that operate a network of tracks and tunnels constructed in secret beneath the very soil where they are enslaved. Cora and Caesar will embark on a harrowing adventure state-to-state, seeking true freedom while trying to outrun a legendary slave catcher named Ridgeway. Jenkins will be directing all eleven episodes and will produce the series with Amazon.
Have you read this award-winning Novel? Are you excited to see a story like this be adapted? Got any casting suggestions? Share your thoughts in the comments below.