Radha Blank's The 40-Year-Old Version, which counts Lena Waithe as a producer, has been picked up by Netflix.
A theatrical release for the title is planned ahead of its streaming debut later this year.
Blank, a New York-based writer with credits on Empire and She's Gotta Have It, wrote, directed and stars in the feature about a once-promising playwright that is now a struggling artist at the age of 40. Just as she becomes creatively reinvigorated when she returns to her first passion, rapping, her play finally gets going, leaving her to navigate the awful tension of compromising her voice for career success.
Peter Y. Kim, Oswin Benjamin, Reed Birney, Imani Lewis and TJ Atoms also star in the comedy.
"It took years of trying to get this film made," Blank, who last week won the Sundance Film Festival's Directing Award in the U.S. Dramatic section for her directorial debut, said Wednesday in a statement. "It’s my love letter to NY and its struggling artists as well as the NY artistic institutions that raised me — Hip Hop and Theater. I made this film in the spirit of the great NY auteurs who came before me but from an angle not often seen. I'm so very proud of the artisans, many from New York, who helped me craft this movie with such loving and capable hands. As a new member of the Netflix family, I’m excited about the global audience that this film will reach. I hope it will spark the next generation of fearless filmmakers in ANY part of the world. I’m thrilled that this came together with Netflix.”
Along with Waithe and Blank, Jordan Fudge, Inuka Bacote-Capiga, Jennifer Semler and Rishi Rajani produced The 40-Year-Old Version.