Netflix has landed the rights to Togo-born British-Nigerian, Femi Fadugba’s debut sci-fi novel “The Upper World” to adapt into a feature film with Academy Award Nominee Daniel Kaluuya attached to star, the company announced on Thursday.
Kaluuya will also produce the film alongside Eric Newman and his Screen Arcade producing partner Bryan Unkeless. Newman brought the book to Netflix. Fadugba is executive producing.
“The Upper World” plot revolves around Esso who is caught in a deadly feud and on the verge of expulsion when he realizes he has an unexpected gift: access to a world where he can see glimpses of the past and the future. A generation away, Rhia is walking to football practice in 2035, unaware that the mysterious stranger she’s about to meet desperately needs her help to avert a bullet fired 15 years ago.
“The Upper World” is the first in a planned series of novels. Penguin UK and HarperCollins US are expected to publish the book in mid-2021 and early 2022 respectively.
Fadugba has a Master’s from Oxford University where he published in Quantum Physics and was a Thouron scholar at University of Pennsylvania. He previously worked in consulting and in solar energy and has written for the Financial Times and Huffington Post.
Fadugba was repped by CAA in conjunction with Claire Wilson of the RCW Literary Agency and brokered the rights deal with Netflix.
Daniel Kaluuya’s recent credits include “Get Out,” “Queen & Slim” and Black Panther.” He’s represented by CAA and Management 360.