Lee Daniels options Men We Reaped by Jesmyn Ward | EW.com

Books

Lee Daniels options Jesmyn Ward's memoir Men We Reaped

(David Livingston/Getty Images, Bloomsbury USA)

Empire executive producer Lee Daniels has optioned the film and television rights to Jesmyn Ward’s critically-acclaimed memoir, Men We Reaped.

While no further information has been released about the project, it seems like a natural fit: Daniels is responsible for racially-conscious films like Monster’s Ball, The Butler, and Precious, and Ward’s memoir covers her childhood, growing up poor in Mississippi. “Ward’s childhood will mess with your heart, just like it messed with hers,” EW wrote in our 2013 review. “This is a lovely book about stuff so painful that Ward must have written it in a kind of fever.”

Men We Reaped was a National Book Critics Circle finalist, and Ward won the 2011 National Book Award for her novel, Salvage the Bones. Up next, Ward will publish The Fire This Time, an anthology of essays inspired by recent events in this country and by James Baldwin’s classic, The First Next Time, in August 2016.