Based on Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's best-selling novel of the same name, Americanah is an epic story of a woman born in Nigeria who leaves for America and her extraordinary experiences with love, heartache, adversity, and self-discovery. Nyong'o is set to star in the 10-episode limited series as Ifemelu, while Gurira — who was nominated for a Tony Award for writing the Broadway play Eclipsed, in which Nyong'o also starred — will serve as showrunner. Gurira is set to write the premiere.
"Through Americanah, Chimamanda brought the African female voice into mainstream consciousness in an unprecedented way," said Gurira in a statement. "It is intellectually incisive, indicting, yet full of humor, and riddled with humanity. She makes unheard voices familiar, universal and yet palpably specific. I am honored to bring her incredible novel to life on the screen. I'm thrilled to collaborate once again with Lupita who brings her astounding ability as a performer and producer shepherding this project, along with HBO Max's unbridled enthusiasm to bring this groundbreaking narrative to the TV audience."
"Americanah has been a passion project for me since I read Chimamanda's beautiful novel in 2013. It's a tale that is simultaneously timely and timeless," said Nyong'o. "I'm thrilled that Danai will bring to the project her intelligence, wit, and understanding of the stories and the worlds of Americanah."
Nyong'o and Gurira, who co-starred in 2018's Black Panther, will also executive produce alongside Plan B Entertainment, Andrea Calderwood (Generation Kill), Didi Rea and Danielle Del, and Nancy Won (Jessica Jones).
HBO Max, WarnerMedia's upcoming streaming service, will launch in 2020.