EXCLUSIVE: Jesse James Films, the production company led by Jesse Murphy and James Sears Bryant, has picked up the film and television rights to the soon-to-be-released Cookies & Milk, the debut children’s novel by Shawn Amos, son of Famous Amos founder, Wally Amos.
Set to be published in Spring 2022 via Little Brown Publishing, a division of Hachette Book Group, the story follows a young Black boy named Ellis who begrudgingly is tasked with helping his optimistic father open a cookie shop on Sunset Blvd with an iconic Hollywood backdrop. The title is a nod to the memories Amos fostered with his father inside their “A” frame shop that would make his last name a household one.
“This magical place was my only home. The cookie store introduced me to the value of work and entrepreneurship. It taught me how to greet a parade of colorful and quirky strangers with an open heart while remaining cautious. It showed me the value of math and science. It taught me about my history thanks to my grandmother who was a steady strict presence. Most importantly, this little store is where my father showed me that he wanted to be my dad” Amos said.
The novel also shines a positive light on black fatherhood and breaks the walls of gender stereotypes. “My father also revealed to me a broader version of masculinity. This tall, lanky, dark-skinned man was not an athlete. He was unafraid to smile. He did not wield any tools nor sit watching Sunday sports. He stood in a kitchen filled with soulful music, his chocolate hands covered in flour making cookies.”
Amos, who worked with Murphy during his time at Universal, is more widely recognized by his moniker, The Reverend Shawn Amos. His latest album Blue Sky debuted at number six on Billboard’s blues album chart.
Murphy and Amos developed the proposal with Aevitas Creative Management repping the property.
“We could not be more excited to be in the Shawn Amos business,” said Murphy. “At his core, Shawn is an Artist with a keen understanding of the impact his childhood had on his adult life. As Shawn puts it in the proposal, ‘Cookies & Milk is a story for kids who miss their fathers. It’s a story for fathers who are looking for the tools to become better dads.’ This is exactly what we aim to explore as we adapt this beautiful property into children’s programming.”
The book deal was brokered by Aevitas Creative Management. Amos is repped by Barnes & Thornburg, LLP. Jesse James Films is repped by 3 Arts Entertainment and Crowe & Dunlevy.
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