Justin Simien, the filmmaker behind Dear White People, is developing an untitled musical for Charles King and his multicultural media company, Macro.
Simien will write and direct the project, with King and Poppy Hanks, Macro’s senior vp production, producing.
Full details are being kept under wraps, but the project takes a musical approach to telling the story of an unnamed figure whose life articulates the triumph and tragedy of the American dream with a story that is at the intersection of race and culture.
King is a former agent partner at WME. He launched Macro this year with a focus on creating and distributing content aimed at black, Latino and other cultural groups. Earlier this summer, the company closed its first eight-figure round of funding that included lead investor Emerson Collective, founded by Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Steve Jobs. The company also has projects in development from director Ryan Coogler (Fruitvale Station) and Craig Brewer (Hustle & Flow).
Simien made his feature directorial debut with Dear White People, which tracked the lives of a group of black students in a predominantly white college. He won the Sundance Film Festival’s special jury prize for breakthrough talent and the Independent Spirit Award for best first screenplay. He now is developing Make a Wish, with Anthony Mackie attached to star, for Paramount.
Simien is repped by WME, Oasis Media Group and Del Shaw.