TOP SOUTH AFRICAN PRODUCER WINS COVETED FILM RIGHTS IN INTERNATIONAL 'BID FEST' TO MULTIPLE AWARD-WINNING AND BESTELLING NOVEL "ZOO CITY" by SOUTH AFRICAN AUTHOR LAUREN BEUKES
"Beukes' energetic noir phantasmagoria, the winner of this year's Arthur C. Clarke Award, crackles with original ideas." - (Jeff VanderMeer, New York Times Book Review)
Helena Spring, widely regarded as one of South Africa's most accomplished motion picture producers, has just been awarded the highly sought-after film rights to Zoo City, the Sci-Fi thriller penned by South African author Lauren Beukes - who garnered the 2011 Arthur C. Clarke Award for best Science Fiction novel. In the wake of whopping sales figures, multiple awards and critical acclaim Beukes' book generated fierce interest from numerous bidders in the entertainment industry, putting Spring alongside major US and UK producers eager to tell Beukes' unique tale.
Zoo City was published first in South Africa by Jacana Media and thereafter internationally by by Angry Robot.
The urban fantasy is set in a futuristic, gritty and hard-core Johannesburg where the eponymous ghetto has been colonised by society's outcasts - like criminals, drug-dealers and psychopaths, and their animal companions. Like the other residents of the Zoo City slum, Zinzi, the anti-heroine, is "animalled", but she is also a shrewd, street-smart girl with the gift (or burden) of finding lost things. Zinzi wears her power animal, a sloth, on her back. When she is hired to find a missing teenybopper star, she hopes that it will be her ticket out of Hell's waiting room.
"I'm delighted to have secured the film and television rights for Zoo City," commented Helena Spring. "It is a groundbreaking, magical novel begging for a life on the big screen. Lauren's storytelling is masterful - edgy and futuristic, unique yet universal. It is high in entertainment value yet emotionally charged, a dream project for any producer."
Beukes positively acknowledges the choice of the winning producer. "Every novelist dreams of a movie deal - but you actually want more than that. You want to find a producer of great vision and integrity and experience who fundamentally gets the book and understands how to transform it into an entirely different creature based on the same genetic material. I'm thrilled that it's being produced in South Africa - for an international audience."
See Angry Robot's website for more information.