HBO has set an all-star lineup of featured performers in the adaptation of Ta-Nehisi Coates’ “Between the World and Me.”
The HBO version’s cast will include Angela Bassett, Oprah Winfrey, “Black Lives Matter” founder Alicia Garza, Joe Morton, Phylicia Rashad, The Roots’ Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter, Courtney B. Vance, Pauletta Washington, and Susan Kelechi Watson. Additional castings will be announced at a later date.
Originally adapted and staged by the Apollo Theater in 2018, the special will combine elements of that production, including readings from Coates’ book, and will once again be directed by Apollo Theater executive producer Kamilah Forbes. It will also incorporate documentary footage from the actors’ home life, archival footage, and animation. The special, which is currently in production under COVID-19 guidelines, debuts this fall on HBO and will also be available to stream on HBO Max.
It is described as an exploration into Black Americans’ fraught history within the country and questions including what it means to live in a Black body. The book is written in the style of a letter to Coates’ teenage son, telling stories of Coates’ experiences growing up in Baltimore’s inner city, his growing fear of daily violence against the Black community and his notion that the structure of American society supports white supremacy.
Forbes will serve as executive producer in addition to directing. Other executive producers are Coates, Watson, and Roger Ross Williams. Williams’ production company One Story Up produces.
Bassett is repped by Gersh, Lighthouse Entertainment, and Fox Rothschild. Garza is repped by ICM. Morton is repped by TalentWorks and Vanguard Management Group. Trotter is repped by Sweet 180, Maverick, and the Law Office of Brad Rubens, Esq. Vance is repped by WME and Fox Rothschild. Washington is repped by WME. Rashad is repped by Innovative Artists and BKEntertainment. Watson is repped by UTA, Authentic Talent and Literary Management, and Jackoway Tyerman. Winfrey is repped by Ziffren Brittenham.