Studio 8 to Adapt Controversial Black Lives Matter-Inspired Comic ‘Black’
HBO has Confederate, and Amazon has Black America, sure, but Studio 8 is going all-in with an adaptation of Black Mask’s superhero comic series Black. The premise: only African-Americans possess superpowers and the government has successfully been suppressing this information for years — until a young boy in Brooklyn gets shot at by police and survives.
Deadline reports that the production company has optioned the rights to the comic to make a feature. The series, created by Kwanza Osajyefo and Tim Smith 3, follows Kareem Jenkins, a teen living in Brooklyn who discovers he, like many others, possesses superpowers. He quickly unravels a global conspiracy and finds others with powers like his. The series was funded by a Kickstarter campaign last year, and just finished its six-issue run.
You might be familiar with Black Mask if you’ve been keeping up with the similar controversy surrounding another of their series, Calexit, a modern-day civil war series that imagines the state of California seceding from a fascist United States. It was announced after Donald Trump’s first month in office, and “conceived during that toxic stew of the U.S. presidential primary campaigns” as Black Mask Studios’ Matteo Pizzolo told io9.
As loath as I am to engage in the already somewhat cliched “X in the age of Trump” talk, these three projects, Black, Confederate, and Black America, mark a definitive shift in how Hollywood is reckoning with modern race relations in this country, and a wake up call for those who believe the societal aftershocks of the Civil War and the Civil Rights Movement have at all dissipated.