EXCLUSIVE: Gangs of London producer Pulse Films has optioned the rights to UK writer Moses McKenzie’s debut novel An Olive Grove in Ends.
Following a competitive bidding war, the transatlantic producer will adapt for TV, with McKenzie, who was named one of the 10 debut novelists of 2022 by The Observer, penning the series.
The coming-of-age tale follows Sayon Hughes, a Black man from Bristol who dreams of a world far removed from the one within which he was raised. Set within a richly drawn Jamaican-Somali community, it follows the turbulent, often painful childhood and youth of Sayon, who tries to keep his crimes secret from the pastor’s daughter he’s in love with while seeking respite from chaos.
The deal was struck by Pulse Senior Development Producer Abigail Dennis and COO – Scripted Jamie Hall with Anne-Marie Doulton of The Ampersand Agency, which represents McKenzie in the UK.
McKenzie said: “From the first conversations with the Pulse team, my agent and I knew we’d found people who understood what I’m aiming to achieve with this story, and who have the creative flair and determination to develop an outstanding TV adaptation.”
Pulse CEO Thomas Benski said: “Moses McKenzie is an exceptional new and exciting talent, and we can’t wait to bring this unique and compelling story to global audiences. He is the perfect example of the up-and-coming, stand-out writing talent we search out. We are committed to championing new and diverse talent in the industry and feel incredibly proud to be at Moses’ side at the start of his career.”
Pulse has been behind two series of Sky’s Gangs of London, which airs on AMC in the U.S. and is also the producer of HBO Max’s recent Harry Potter: 20th Anniversary celebration and Netflix doc The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann.