Amazon Studios today announced Oscar and Golden Globe Award-winner Barry Jenkins (Moonlight) will direct all 11 episodes of the highly anticipated greenlit limited series The Underground Railroad which will premiere globally on Amazon Prime Video.
Based on Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer Prize-winning and bestselling novel The Underground Railroad, which also won the National Book Award and was an Oprah Winfrey Book Club pick, the series is executive produced by Jenkins’ PASTEL and Brad Pitt’s Plan B Entertainment.
Barry Jenkins commented: “Working with Amazon and a wonderful group of screenwriters to develop Colson’s novel into a limited series has been an extremely rewarding experience. Translating his singular voice into a cohesive and equally singular visual language is a task I very much look forward to.”
“It’s an absolute gift to have Barry Jenkins commit to directing all the episodes for our upcoming limited series The Underground Railroad,” said Jennifer Salke, Head of Amazon Studios. “Barry’s eye for character and sustained exhilarating, emotional storytelling style ensures that this project is in the right hands. We can’t wait to get started and bring this significant story to our Prime Video audience.”
About The Underground Railroad
Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. Life is hell for all the slaves, but especially bad for Cora; an outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is coming into womanhood—where even greater pain awaits. When Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her about the Underground Railroad, they decide to take a terrifying risk and escape.
The Underground Railroad is no mere metaphor—engineers and conductors operate a network of tracks and tunnels constructed in secret beneath the very Southern soil upon which they’ve been enslaved. Cora and Caesar’s first stop is South Carolina, in a city that initially seems like a haven. But the city’s placid surface masks an insidious scheme designed for its black denizens.
And even worse: Ridgeway, a relentless slave catcher of mythic origin, is close on their heels. Forced to flee again, Cora embarks on a harrowing flight, state-by-state, seeking true freedom in a heroine’s journey carved through the soil and soul of America.