Idris Elba snares Derek Owusu's book for film and TV

Idris Elba snares Derek Owusu's book for film and TV

Idris Elba's production company Green Door Pictures has secured film and TV rights to #Merky Books' forthcoming title Teaching My Brother To Read by Derek Owusu.

Teaching My Brother To Read is the second book of a two-book deal negotiated by OWN IT! with Stormzy’s #Merky Books imprint, part of Penguin Random House. Owusu is also one of the former co-hosts of the "Mostly Lit" podcast. The deal was negotiated by Crystal Mahey-Morgan from OWN IT! with Green Door Pictures’ managing director Lorraine Burgess.

In addition to writing the book, Owusu will record a "Teaching My Brother To Read" podcast. #Merky Books said the result promises to be a “ground breaking work of non-fiction and a unique celebration of the power of literature”.

Elba, a musician, actor and producer, who founded Green Door Pictures, said "Derek’s book will be an inspiring exploration of brotherhood and how literature can influence and transform lives. We are genuinely excited about adapting this book as a work of fiction and non-fiction”

The book followed a year long project undertaken by the author in order to find a way to connect to his younger brother as Owusu’s brother “was getting into an increasing amount of trouble and rapidly losing interest in his own life,” the PRH imprint said. Each month, Owusu gave his brother a book and would pay him to read it. At the end of the month, they met to discuss the book. "As much as this is a book about connecting to literature it is also a book about two brothers connecting with each other," the publisher said.

Owusu is a writer, poet and podcaster from North London. In 2016 he joined the award-winning literature podcast "Mostly Lit". He also produced the “This is Spoke” Podcast for Penguin Random House and Freemantle Media and has collated, edited and contributed to SAFE: On Black British Men Reclaiming Space, an anthology exploring the experiences of black men in Britain (Trapeze). His first solo work That Reminds Me is a novel-in-verse which was published by #Merky Books on 14th November.