Historian Dr. Ibram X. Kendi to Produce Three Netflix Projects Based on His Anti-Racism Books
Dr. Ibram X. Kendi is partnering with Netflix to produce three projects based on his books about anti-racism, which shot to the top of bestsellers lists over the summer.
The projects are each geared towards audiences of different ages, including young adults and preschool-aged children, and feature collaborators Roger Ross Williams, the first Black director to win an Oscar, and Girlfriend's Mara Brock Akil, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The first, Stamped from the Beginning, will be a combination of a documentary and scripted feature film based on Kendi's 2016 book Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America.
Stamped: Racism, Antiracism and You — based on Kendi's book of the same name, co-authored by Jason Reynolds — will be a documentary companion to Stamped from the Beginning aimed at YA audiences. Williams will direct both projects, with Kendi and Akil executive producing.
"Stamped From the Beginning and Stamped: Racism, Antiracism and You are powerful and essential pieces of literature that clearly outline how deeply rooted racist ideas are in the United States," Williams said in a statement to THR.
"I hope these films crystallize Dr. Kendi's message that 'the only thing wrong with Black people is that they think something is wrong with Black people' and encourage everyone to fight for a more equitable society," he added.
The final of the three projects, Antiracist Baby, will adapt Kendi's children's bestseller in the form of musical animated shorts. Chris Nee, the creator of the Disney Junior series Doc McStuffins, will executive produce the series.
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"I'm elated to work with Roger Ross Williams, Mara Brock Akil and Chris Nee. They are such ambitious, innovative and passionate creators who are committed to racial justice," Kendi told THR in a statement. "But I'm really elated for the viewers, for the adults and children who will be captivated, informed and transformed by these projects."
Kendi, the founding director of Boston University's Center for Antiracist Research and one of Time's 100 most influential people of 2020, opened up to PEOPLE in July about the importance of teaching young people that they are not color-blind.
"If we're not deliberately teaching them how to be anti-racist, then we're allowing society to continue to nurture them to be racist," he said at the time.