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Half Of A Yellow Sun Coming To Movie Theaters

September 4, 2009
Writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: Half of A Yellow Sun

Writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: Half of A Yellow Sun

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s award winning novel, Half Of A Yellow Sun, has been picked up to become a film with the production team behind “The Last King of Scotland”, reports Jamati. (FINALLY!)

It’s always great to see Nigerian literature being picked up by the mass media. I’m definitely looking forward to this film from the outcome to the film production’s actor picks…and hopefully you are too excited about this tidbit.

Half Of A Yellow Sun won a Orange Prize for Fiction in 2007 and the young British-Nigerian author was named by ESSENCE as a honorable African.

About Half of A Yellow Sun:

Half of a Yellow Sun is set in Nigeria during the 1960s, at a time of the vicious Nigeria- Biafra war in which more than a million people died and thousands were massacred in cold blood.

Three characters are swept up in the rapidly unfolding political events. Ugwu, a boy from a poor village, is employed as a houseboy for a university lecturer. Olanna, a young, middle-class woman, has come to live with the professor, abandoning her privileged life in Lagos for a dusty university town and the charismatic idealism of her new lover. Richard is a tall, shy Englishman, in thrall to Olanna’s twin sister Kainene, who refuses to belong to anyone.

They are propelled into events that will pull them apart and bring them together in the most unexpected ways. As Nigerian troops advance and they run for their lives, their ideals – and their loyalties to each other – are severely tested. This novel is about Africa, about moral responsibility, the end of colonialism, ethnic allegiances, class and race, and about how love can complicate all these things.

[quote via ORANGE PRIZE.CO.UK]

Quick Facts on Chimamanda:

  • She was born in Enugu State, Nigeria to Igbo parents but she’s from Anambra State, Nigeria.
  • She’s been called the female literary answer to Chinua Achede.
  • BBC News called Chimamanda the new face of African literature.
  • Her birthday is coming up – September 15th!
  • Her debut novel is called, Purple Hibiscus which won Best First Book award in the 2005 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize.
  • Her third novel, The Thing Around Your Neck, was released in April 2009.

Chiwetel Ejifor as Richard /Yaya DaCosta as twin sisters Olanna and Kainene

Why? Two-time Golden Globe nominated Chiwetel has proved himself as an impressive, serious actor who has worked alongside Denzel Washington, Taraji P. Henson, Don Cheadle and fellow British-Nigerian actor Sophie Okonedo. Go rent Chiwetel’s films American Gangster, Talk To Me, and Four Brothers to see what I’m talking about!

Yaya turned around her America’s Next Top Model (Season 3) platform into a lucrative acting career as she appeared in Take The Lead alongside Rob Brown and Antonio Banderas and the long running soap opera All My Children.

Would you go support this film?

17 Comments leave one →
  1. Njideka permalink
    October 13, 2009 2:57 pm

    As a die-hard fan of Chimamanda Adichie and a fellow Igbo, I would ABSOLUTELY support this film. However, I am extremely appalled that Yaya was selected to play the role of not one, but TWO lead characters. As a Nigerian, I am disappointed that a Nigerian actress was not selected, especially when there are outstanding Nigerian/Igbo actresses who are better suited to play the part (Genevieve Nnaji is one example). I saw both movies Yaya acted in and neither performance was noteworthy. I hope casting calls are still taking place and she is not the final pick.

  2. Njideka permalink
    October 13, 2009 2:59 pm

    Correction: Yaya has only acted in one movie that I know of. I was thinking of someone else when I said two movies. Her acting in the “Take the Lead” was still less than stellar.

  3. Ola permalink
    November 19, 2009 2:04 pm

    With all due respect, but it would appear that the author of this article has not read the book Half of a Yellow Sun!

    If they had, they would realise that the suggestions for their dream cast are most inappropriate, given that the character of Richard is a white man, and that Olanna and Kainene are not identical twins. You only have to read up to chapter 2 to realise this!

    I’m not sure if I’d like to see this made into a Hollywood movie, if for no other reason than I know I’ll be cringing at black Americans trying to speak at what they think is a Nigerian accent!

  4. 2bchoopla permalink*
    November 19, 2009 7:44 pm

    With Hollywood they tend to favor the underdog (ie. Slumdog Millionaire), newcomer (ie. Jennifer Hudson) and established (ie.Sophie Okonedo, Djimon Hounsou <–both Oscar nominees) and now if a big name Nollywood actress carried this film perhaps Hollywood would finally give Nollywood the same type of due respect it earns and deserves. (Nollywood is right behind Bollywood with film making!) Miss Nnaji can be the Kerry Washington of Hollywood with the RIGHT management, PR team, makeup, a plum designer red carpet look (ie. Tiffany Amber, Jewel by Lisa) and endorsement deals (Maybelline, Covergirl, Loreal.) Not to knock on Miss Rai's hustle but if she can breakthrough American market so can Miss Nnaji!

  5. kemi sawyer permalink
    November 26, 2009 7:06 am

    Oh please, do you people really think our film industry compares with Bollywood’s? Have you seen the technical quality of the films those people are making these days. Besides, the author did not say these people were the cast, she said they would be her dream cast. I think Genevieve is more of a star than an actress but i do think we have the acting talent for the role (if only our actors would take their craft more seriously). The gist I heard is that thandie newton has been offered the role.

  6. kemi sawyer permalink
    November 26, 2009 7:08 am

    and apart from the white guy, there is a black male lead as well, the revolutionary nsukka lecturer who’s dating the other twin

  7. 2bchoopla permalink*
    November 26, 2009 12:09 pm

    Kemi have you seen This America which was shot primarily in the States? There is hope for Naija film industry but the bad ones are overshadowing the gems that there are being produced. If you go to any Carribean food store our films are being sold. There is an audience for our films – the good, the bad and the ugly. Thandie Newton would help bring star power to this film. Thanks for noticing that the blog post mention DREAM cast. I pick these two based upon marketability. Genevieve Nnaji needs a great film role in the American market to get started over here. She can even do a Naija film but have the premiere here in America. People WILL come out to support. She has fans from Nigerians to Non-Nigerians. Miss Nnaji takes her acting career seriously as she has become selective in what role she would portray. If Nnaji, Thandie, Djimon, even Boris Kodjoe, and Chiwetel were cast the Hollywood industry would treat it as a black film. Look at how The Secret Life of Bees was embraced ticket wise.

  8. Amaka permalink
    January 10, 2010 12:31 am

    my dream cast? I’d like Kerry Washington to play the lovely twin (she has that beautiful Igbo girl looks going on!), Djimon Honsou to play the radical lecturer (I love his intensity!), Kate Henshaw to play the other twin that dates the white guy (because she can convey that quiet intelligence, the “ugly twin” has!) and James McAvoy to play the confused white guy….because he was so brilliant in last king of scotland!!I do hope Ngozi Adichie gets to have some creative input into the making of this movie and not just leave it to hollywood to glamorize!! The wrong casting can just make the story another African needless war and killing saga! But with the right casting, the story within the story can be conveyed beautifully!

  9. Amaka permalink
    January 10, 2010 12:32 am

    Another important xter is the lecturer’s house boy!! This young fella is the key the link in the entire story as it turns out he was the one writing the book with the book! I can’t think of anyone that can play him but the casting for this shld be right!

  10. Uzo permalink
    July 18, 2010 5:11 pm

    These are my cast

    Ugwu – OC Ukeje or David Oyewole
    Olanna – Thandie Newton or Naomie Harris(They both need to put on weight though)
    Odenigbo – Chiwetel Ejiofor
    Richard – James McAvoy
    Kainene – Genevieve Nnaji or Nse Ikpe
    Madu – Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje
    Mohammed – Benjamin Joseph (or Boris Kodjoe if he is meant to be a light skinned Northerner)
    Jomo (the gardener) – Nkem Owoh

  11. Uzo permalink
    July 18, 2010 5:17 pm

    I fogot to add

    Odenigbo’s mother – My 1st choice wil be the woman that played the part of Nduka’s mum in the Nigerian soap Checkmate. So sorry I don’t know her name. If not her then the predictable Patience Ozorkwo will do

  12. Hader otaki permalink
    November 5, 2010 6:24 pm

    i strongly believe dis making of dis book into a movie is fantastic idea but only with d proper casting. the book contain very inspiring characters and the director or the casting production are to be very deep in casting their characters. if i were to suggest few characters, i will cast……..
    Richard……hugh grant
    olanna……. stephanie okereke
    Odenegbo………chiwetel Ejifor
    kainene………thandie newton or yaya dacosta
    colonel Madu..the Nigeria guy from LOST2 and G I JOE
    Susan……..kate winslet
    Ogwu…….. no one cast to my mind for now
    okeoma the poet………i cant think of anyone now but myself cos i am a poem buff

  13. patrick permalink
    April 17, 2011 12:53 am

    I read the book and I was blown away by her writing prowess and creativity.If the book is goin 2 be made as a movie it should be done properly and carefully so that the movie can come out a masterpiece.but I have a very big problem with her dream cast as she described it in the first place the book is about wat happened in our soil.the writer was telling our story in our if the movie is goin 2 be made our pple 2 should act in the film 2 except chimamanda is underestimating nigerian actors and actresses.wat is wrong in featurin nollywood actors.pls let chimamanda and the director feature some nigerians so it can look real.and it can be relatable 2 nigerian my dreamcast would be Olanna(Genevieve Nnaji)Odenigbo(Jaime Foxx,or Will Smith)kainene(Halle Berry or Stephanie Okereke)richard(leornado dicapro)ugwu(let us using a nigerian first timer but oc ukeje can also do justice 2 the role)madu(Djimon Honsou)susan(kate hudson)this are my perfect cast if you do this you will put nigeria on the map pls consider this cast.

  14. Adesua permalink
    May 24, 2011 10:26 pm

    To lend some autheticity to the movie, I think it should be shot on Africa soil with a dominace of Nigerian actors and actresses. I would like to see Colin Firth as Richard (but with his success with the King’s Speech…would he accept the offer?…..). Stella Damasus Aboderin as Olana and Genevieve Nnaji as Kainene, I couldn’t think of anything one else but Chiwetel for Odenigbo………..

  15. Zua permalink
    August 28, 2011 8:43 pm

    oh Please! What in heaven’s name happened to all the professional black-african actresses that we have to bring other professionals from the West to be playing our roles.This is the major problem i have with foreigners telling our stories sometimes. Give Africa a chance and you won’t regret it! Btw… Chiwetel is a great choice for Odenigbo any day!


  1. Chiwetel Ejiofor & Thandie Newton at 2012 premiere « Feels Good 2 B Home
  2. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s TED 2009 Speech on The Danger of A Single Story « Feels Good 2 B Home

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