- Janae Marks’ critically acclaimed book From the Desk of Zoe Washington is being developed by Disney Channel as a TV movie.
- Kerry Washington (Scandal) and Pilar Savone (Django Unchained) will produce through Simpson Street Productions along with Effie T. Brown (Dear White People) of Gamechanger Films.
- The film tells the story of a tween aspiring pastry chef who secretly writes to the imprisoned father she’s never known while competing in a TV baking competition.
- One of the book’s themes deals with systemic racism through Zoe’s discovery that her father is innocent.
- The novel was published last year and has won multiple awards including the 2020 Cybils Award winner and being crowned "Best Book of the Year" by Parents magazine, Book Riot, Kirkus Reviews, Booklist, and Chicago Public Library, in addition to being on the Boston Globe and NPR's "100 Favorite Books for Young Readers."
- The announcement was made at today's Television Critics Association Virtual Summer Press Tour.
What They’re Saying:
- Ayo Davis, executive vice president, Creative Development and Strategy, Disney Branded Television: "Marks' book does a beautiful job of delicately weaving together the challenges and triumphs of life and the enormity of social injustice and systemic racism through the lens of an almost-seventh grader. This is a perfect example of the type of premium storytelling that will not only entertain but will touch our audience on many levels as they see these topical issues reflected on the screen."
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Alex joined the Laughing Place team in 2014 and has been a lifelong Disney fan. His main beats for LP are Disney-branded movies, TV shows, books, music and toys. He recently became a member of the Television Critics Association (TCA).