EXCLUSIVE: Refinery29, Untitled Entertainment, and Rebelle Media’s period romantic comedy Mr. Malcolm’s List from director Emma Holly Jones is being expanded to a feature.

Pic will rep Jones’ feature directorial debut and star Crazy Rich AsiansGemma Chan and Slumdog Millionaire‘s Freida Pinto who headlined the original short.

Chan in ‘Mr. Malcolm’s List’

Written by Suzanne Allain and based on her novel of the same name, Mr. Malcolm’s List will cast color consciously, using a culturally diverse cast to reclaim historical narratives that are traditionally played by white actors. Mr. Malcolm’s List is one of the highest-rated scripts on The Black List website and is accompanied by an award-winning podcast of the same name.

Refinery29, Untitled Entertainment, and Rebelle Media first partnered on the short film which also starred Sope Dirisu, and Oliver Jackson-Cohen. Set in early 1800s England, a young lady (Chan) engages in courtship with a mysterious wealthy suitor, Mr. Malcolm, unaware of his unattainable list of demands for his future wife. The short debuted on Feb. 14 on Refinery29.com. You can watch the short above.

Untitled Entertainment’s Laura Rister and Rebelle Media’s Laura Lewis are producing.  Alison Owen (Elizabeth) will serve as an EP alongside Refinery29.

“I have always loved championing new voices in front of and behind the camera but getting these works financed is the difficulty,” said Rister.

Pinto in ‘Mr. Malcolm’s List’
Refinery29

“Emma Holly Jones crafted a fresh and modern take on this genre, one that brought chills to all of us, and helped us gain the attention of Refinery29 and this amazing cast. If I could only work on projects with such a bold spin, I’d be a happy producer!  Having the opportunity, in partnership with Refinery29, to support a filmmaker and her vision in this way, and to enable the film to get made is a dream.”

“I launched Rebelle Media in order to create commercial content that puts a unique lens on the world and especially how we view women in it,” said Lewis. “Emma’s bold vision for this project immediately piqued our interest, because it shook up the traditional narrative. We are proud to re-team with the fantastic group behind our short film to bring this romantic, funny, and innovative feature film to life.”

Mr. Malcolm’s List is the perfect example of quality content created through an inclusive, intersectional lens,” said Amy Emmerich, Chief Content Officer, Refinery29. “Emma Holly Jones is a force with a fresh voice — we’re so honored to be an incubator for her talent and this story, and are thrilled to support this story as a feature-length film.”

Chan is represented by Independent Talent Group and WME and Pinto is repped by CAA and Principal Entertainment. Jones is repped by Verve, Management 360 and Ginbsburg Daniels Kallis. Allain is represented by Verve and Bellevue Productions.