'The Spook Who Sat By The Door': Long-Gestating Adaptation Produced By Lee Daniels Gets FX Pilot Order
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Film

'The Spook Who Sat By The Door': Long-Gestating Adaptation Produced By Lee Daniels Gets FX Pilot Order

The series in development based on The Spook Who Sat by the Door has officially gotten a pilot order at FX. Variety first reported the news.

It has been in the works for some time. The last news that came out about it was in 2019 when it landed at FX. In 2018 it was announced that Lee Daniels Entertainment, with Fox 21 Television Studios (which has now folded into Disney’s 20th Television), had optioned the novel The Spook Who Sat by the Door to develop a TV series based on the book by Sam Greenlee and the 1973 film.

Leigh Dana Jackson is the writer and is adapting it for television. Jackson, who is a co-executive producer on Netflix’s upcoming Raising Dion, will also executive produce the series.  Burning Sands and The First Purge director Gerard McMurray will direct the pilot and executive producer.

The novel was first released in 1969. The 1973 film starred Lawrence Cook, Janet League and Paula Kelly. In 2012, the movie was added to the National Film Registry.

The description of the potential series that floated around back in 2018 said that the project “looks at the fictional story of Dan Freeman, the first African American CIA officer hired by the agency in the late 1960s. The story chronicles the quest of Freeman, who was recruited as part of an affirmative action program. After a very competitive selection process, he trains in high-level combat and espionage. However, following this arduous training, this model recruit is rewarded with a post in the reprographics (aka photocopying) department, ‘left by the door’ as a token of the CIA’s ‘racial equality.’”

This is the latest in a blaxploitation boom, including reboots of of Super Fly and Shaft film. At one time, Misha Green was rebooting Cleopatra Jones for fiilm. Get Christie Love! pilot from Power creator was passed over at ABC a few years back and a Hulu reboot of Foxy Brown starring Meagan Good is presumed to be out of development.

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