Sci-fi films, young adult thriller among six new Obama projects for Netflix

FILE PHOTO: Former U.S. President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama greet guests during the Obama Foundation Summit in Chicago
FILE PHOTO: Former U.S. President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama greet guests during the first day of the Obama Foundation Summit in Chicago, Illinois, U.S. October 31, 2017. REUTERS/Kamil Krzaczynski/File Photo

February 5, 2021

By Lisa Richwine

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Barack and Michelle Obama’s production company on Friday announced six new projects in development for Netflix Inc, including a love story with a supernatural twist and a young adult thriller.

The former president and first lady’s Higher Ground Productions will adapt British-Pakistani author Mohsin Hamid’s novel “Exit West” into a film, according to a statement from Netflix. The book tells the story of a young couple who find magical doors to transport them to other places and land in the middle of a global refugee crisis.

Other film projects include a science-fiction movie called “Satellite,” which will be produced with T Street, a production company run by “Star Wars” director Rian Johnson and producer Ram Bergman. Another is “Tenzing,” the story of the Nepalese-Indian man who first reached the summit of Mount Everest with Sir Edmund Hillary of New Zealand.

“The Young Wife” is a feature film that follows a woman on the day of her wedding who feels out of sync as a storm approaches.

The company also is developing two TV series. “Firekeeper’s Daughter” is a thriller based on a young adult novel by Angeline Boulley about an 18-year-old Ojibwe tribe member who reluctantly goes undercover in a police investigation on her reservation.

The other series is a nature documentary about national parks.

Netflix said the projects will be released over the next few years but did not give exact release dates.

The Obamas signed a multiyear production deal with Netflix in 2018. Their earlier Netflix projects include “American Factory,” which won an Oscar in 2020 for best documentary.

(Reporting by Lisa Richwine; editing by Jonathan Oatis)