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Candice Carty-Williams to adapt her debut novel Queenie for a Channel 4 drama

The series will be made up of eight 30-minute episodes about a young Black woman’s value and the unrelenting trials and tribulations of life.

Announced today during this year's Edinburgh Television Festival Queenie follows 25-year-old Queenie Jenkins, a Jamaican British straddler of both cultures, sometimes catastrophist, occasional mess, but more often than not an undervalued success, who is always, always enough.

As Queenie’s already loyal subjects will know, she works at a national newspaper where she's frequently forced to compare herself to her white, middle-class peers.

After a less than clean break up from her long-term white boyfriend Tom, she finds herself somewhat lost and searching for comfort in all the wrong places, including the beds and backseats of several undeserving men who do a great job of occupying her brain space, but a bad one of affirming her self-worth.

Surrounded by her “Corgis,” the name bestowed to her brilliant but not always sympathetic bevy of girlfriends made up of Kyazike, Darcy and Cassandra, Queenie finds herself impulsively veering from one regrettable decision to another and asking the big, bruising questions that plague every woman in a world that keeps trying to bombard them with answers, “What are you doing? Why are you doing it? Who do you want to be?!”

Queenie is about heartbreak and bad dates and worse sex. It’s about south London and the gentrification that’s chipping away at it and what it represents.

It’s about race, identity, culture and the politics that shape you. It’s about the love of friends, the chaos of family and community and all the other varying relationships in-between, but especially the one with yourself.

The TV adaptation promises to be razor-sharp, utterly honest, blisteringly funny, and achingly yet beautifully relatable, full of as much heart and soul as the lady herself. At its core, it’s a story about a young Black woman’s value and the unrelenting trials and tribulations of life.

Speaking about Queenie, Candice Carty-Williams said "Being able to bring Queenie, her family, and of course the Corgis to the screen, is so exciting to me. And to do that with Channel 4, who has always set the tone for what television is about by pushing the boundaries of what we watch, is an added bonus."

"It’s clear to me that Queenie, a character whose story came to me when I was battling my way through my own messy twenties, is still so relevant today, and it’s about time that a show like this can explore why. To adapt and breathe new life into a story that has been talked about across the globe, and to bring Queenie, our problematic fave, to a whole new audience, is such a privilege."

Channel 4's Head of Drama, Caroline Hollick, said "Candice is the stand-out voice of her generation and has created an iconic character in Queenie whose honesty, vulnerability and sharp sense of humour shines an unflinching light on who we are today. I’m so excited for this adaptation, and I’m in no doubt that both Queenie and Candice are going to take Channel 4 by storm!"

Executive Producer Steve November added "Channel 4 is the perfect home for Candice’s provocative, timely, hilarious writing and we are delighted to be working with them and Candice to bring Queenie to the screen."

And Executive Producer, Sarah Conroy said "It’s been a privilege to work with Candice on Queenie's journey from page to screen and we hope that the many, many fans of the book will love this version of Queenie and that the adaptation will allow new fans to fall in love with this amazing character for the first time."

Queenie will be written and created by Candice Carty-Williams and produced by Further South Productions in association with Lionsgate Television for Channel 4.

The series will be executive produced by Steve November, Sarah Conroy and Candice Carty-Williams and was commissioned for Channel 4 Drama by Head of Drama, Caroline Hollick and Commissioning Editor Gemma Boswell. Queenie will be distributed by Lionsgate and starts production next year.

Queenie will air on Channel 4


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