t*Lupita Nyong’o and Danai Gurira’s ‘Americanah’ series with HBO has been cancelled due to production delays amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Nyong’o was set to star in and executive produce the adaptation of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s acclaimed, best-selling novel. The project was greenlit as a 10-episode limited series last year, with Gurira serving as writer and showrunner.
“I’m involved with every angle of it,” Gurira told EW of the series earlier this year. “It’s not a small thing to be taking on a 600-page novel and bringing it to the fore as a TV show. But I realized that if I didn’t do it I would never, ever forgive myself. Taking it on will require everything I’ve got, and then some.”
The COVID-19 pandemic reportedly forced Nyong’o to drop out over scheduling conflicts. HBO Max ultimately decided to cancel the series, according to the report.
Here’s more about the project from EW:
The Oscar winner planned to star as Ifemelu, described as “a young, beautiful, self-assured woman raised in Nigeria, who as a teenager falls in love with her classmate Obinze.” The two flee their military-ruled country, with Ifemelu heading to America and Obinze heading to London. While Ifemelu is forced to grapple for the first time with what it means to be Black, despite her academic success in the U.S., the post-9/11 climate closes America off to Obinze, who’s then forced to live undocumented in the U.K. Zackary Momoh and Uzo Aduba were also attached to star as Obinze and Ifemelu’s aunt Uju, respectively.
“I’ve always wanted to helm a creation for the screen,” Gurira told the publication. “I’m an avid TV watcher. I watch a lot of things. I’ve watched how television has evolved over the last couple decades. Great television really, really excites me.”