Daniel Kaluuya to make film-writing debut with dystopian thriller for Netflix

The Oscar winner will also serve as co-producer.
Daniel Kaluuya to make film-writing debut with dystopian thriller for Netflix

By Laura Harding, PA Deputy Entertainment Editor

Daniel Kaluuya will co-write his first feature-length film, with Top Boy star Kane Robinson in the starring role.

Futuristic dystopian drama The Kitchen will also be co-produced by the Oscar-winning actor, who has previously written shorts and has a writing credit on two episodes of Skins, in which he played Posh Kenneth.

The Get Out star, who will produce under his 59 per cent Productions banner, will write the Netflix film alongside Gangs Of London’s Joe Murtagh, while first time feature filmmaker Kibwe Tavares will serve as director.

He will produce alongside Daniel Emmerson for DMC Film, while actor Michael Fassbender will serve as an executive producer.

The Kitchen is set in London in 2044, in a future where the gap between rich and poor has been stretched to its limits, all forms of social housing have been eradicated and London’s working classes have been forced to live in temporary accommodation on the outskirts of the city.

The Kitchen is London’s last village harbouring residents that refuse to move out of the place they call home and is home to Izi, played by Robinson, who is desperately trying to find a way out, and 12-year-old Benji, played by newcomer Jedaiah Bannerman, who has lost his mother and is searching for a family.

The film follows the unlikely pair as they battle to survive in a system that is stacked against them.

Kaluuya said: “In 2011, I was in my barbershop and there was a guy boasting about smash and grabs – kids doing million-pound heists in a minute, getting paid £200 to do it.

“I saw the potential to unlock a unique story door to the inequality, fatherhood, class, joy, resilience, courage, defiance and care of London.

“Now, nearly a decade later, Kibwe Tavares, Daniel Emmerson and I are about to start production, immersing ourselves in a dystopian London that interrogates what ‘care’ means, at home and as a society and the dangers in our future if we stay indifferent to everything around us.

“I feel blessed and honoured that my first co-writing film credit is with this inspiring group of creatives, and with the support of Film 4 and Netflix.

“All of us are excited to watch Kibwe’s incredible, cinematic, electric vision come to life, and to create a moment that audiences want to take with them.”

Daniel Kaluuya
Daniel Kaluuya (PA)

Director Tavares, who served as executive producer on BBC drama Noughts & Crosses, was awarded the Sundance Special Jury Award for his animated short Robots Of Brixton and was nominated for the Sundance Short Film Grand Jury Prize for Jonah, starring Kaluuya.

He said: “The Kitchen is very much a love letter to London, the city that has defined my childhood and ultimately my identity.

“It’s set in an extreme version of our current world; our characters have little choice but to let the city take over them.

“Through Benji, a 12-year-old in need of care, we explore what we as society lose in the ever-changing and shifting patterns of life, of our cities. This is a film for all the communities out there that are trying to take care of each other.”

The Kitchen will shoot on location in London and Paris and release globally on Netflix in 2023.

Fiona Lamptey, director of UK features for Netflix, said: “I’ve had the pleasure of producing for Kibwe over the years and couldn’t be happier to now be supporting Kibwe’s debut feature as part of the Netflix UK film slate.

“The Kitchen is ambitious, timely and will showcase the great vision he has as a filmmaker, bringing the exciting world-building and textured nuances from Daniel Kaluuya’s debut feature script to our screens.”

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