Obamas Option Michael Lewis' 'The Fifth Risk' for Netflix

The book details the chaos that occurred in several U.S. government departments in the transition from the Obama to Trump administrations.
Kevin Mazur/WireImage; Alex Wong/Getty
Michael Lewis (left); Barack and Michelle Obama

Barack and Michelle Obama have made their first acquisition under their production deal with Netflix, and it's a pretty big one.

The former president and first lady have optioned author Michael Lewis' book The Fifth Risk to develop as a potential series, sources confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter.

The Obamas signed a deal with Netflix in May, with the goal to "cultivate and curate the talented, inspiring, creative voices who are able to promote greater empathy and understanding between peoples, and help them share their stories with the entire world," as Barack Obama put it at the time.

Netflix declined comment. A rep for the Obamas said the couple is exploring projects, but nothing has been greenlighted yet.

The Fifth Risk was published Oct. 2 and has been on the New York Times best-seller list ever since. It details the chaos at the federal departments of agriculture, commerce and energy in the transition from the Obama to Trump administrations, as career employees waited for incoming Trump officials to arrive during the transition — and waited, and waited. When they finally did arrive, there were either not enough of them and they were often underinformed about their new jobs.

Lewis is scheduled to be the guest on journalist Katie Couric's podcast Thursday and will announce the deal with the Obamas then. The author's book Flash Boys is also in development at Netflix.

Deadline was first to report the news of the Obamas optioning Lewis' book.