Lambertville Author James McBride to Produce The Good Lord Bird

In January we interviewed Lambertville author James McBride, who had just won the National Book Award for his novel The Good Lord Bird. When we asked if the book would be made into a movie like his previous work Miracle at St. Anna, he responded that, “No one’s called … But look, if you write a book because you want someone to turn it into a film, you’re making a mistake.”

Well it looks like someone’s called between now and then, because Deadline is reporting that a film based on The Good Lord Bird is underway. McBride will produce the picture, and its stars another somewhat-Philly connection, Will Smith’s son Jaden Smith. More from Deadline:

Liev Schreiber and Jaden Smith are set to star in The Good Lord Bird, a big-screen adaptation of the 2013 National Book Award winner by James McBride. McBride is aboard to produce the pic about … Henry “Onion” Shackleford (Smith), a young slave who links up with radical abolitionist John Brown (Schreiber) in 1856 Kansas, and travels the nation with Brown’s motley crew of freedom fighters. Story is told with a satirical bent through the eyes of Onion, who wears a dress and is at first mistaken for a girl, as he bears witness to Brown’s historic campaign and encounters the likes of Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman en route to the bloody Harper’s Ferry raid that helped spark the Civil War.

No word on a release date yet. Stay tuned to Ticket for updates.