Nia DaCosta is set to direct the film adaptation of Ta-Nehisi Coates' debut novel The Water Dancer for MGM, Plan B, Coates' production company Maceo-Lyn and Harpo Films.
The Water Dancer follows the character Hiram Walker, who was, according to Deadline, "born into bondage [and] [a]s a child, he loses his mother and over time loses all memory of her."
Walker nearly dies when he crashes a carriage into a river, but he is saved by "a mysterious power he never realized he had and struggles to understand," according to the description. Coates will adapt his book and will produce via Maceo-Lyn. Winfrey also produces via Harpo Films.
The book was Oprah Winfrey's first Oprah's Book Club selection with her partnership with Apple, and has sold over a million copies.
DaCosta's latest film, Candyman, was produced by Monkeypaw. The film starred Yahya Abdul-Mateen II and Teyonah Parris and gave a different viewpoint to the 1990s Candyman movie. Prior to that, DaCosta's debut film, Little Woods, put her on the map with Lily James and Tessa Thompson starring as estranged sisters learning to renew their relationship.
DaCosta is currently wrapping up work on The Marvels, starring Parris, Brie Larson and Iman Vellani. The Marvel Studios film will follow the group of superheroes who all share the "Marvel" title and have a variety of powers. The film also marks the film debut for Ms. Marvel, who will make her television debut in the upcoming Disney+ series of the same this year.