‘Kill Your Friends’ Author John Niven Adapting ‘Straight White Male’ for TV

Banijay’s Yellow Bird U.K. banner has optioned the TV rights to Niven’s 2013 book.

Yellow Bird U.K., part of TV giant the Banijay Group, has optioned the rights to Straight White Male, the 2013 novel by Scottish writer John Niven.

Niven – author of Kill Your Friends, which was made into a film starring Nicholas Hoult and James Corden in 2015 – will adapt his own book, which follows the personal and professional misadventures of unreconstructed Irish writer, Kennedy Marr.

For fifteen years, Kennedy Marr has lived the high life in L.A., womanizing, writing movies, and spending every dollar he earns. He’s got away with it because he’s charming and talented and delivers when it matters; a literary wunderkind whose novels took him from humble roots in Cork, Ireland, to Hollywood success, via a doomed marriage.

But now, time – in the form of a huge unpaid tax bill – has caught up with Kennedy. To keep the IRS at bay, he’s forced to return to England, to accept a lucrative prize from the English department of a red brick university in deepest Warwickshire.

The series will be executive produced by Yellow Bird UK’s Berna Levin (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Hidden and upcoming The Girl in the Spider’s Web) and Luke Franklin (The Man in the High Castle, Ransom, Parade’s End).

“I’ve long thought that Straight White Male had all the ingredients for a great TV series, and that Kennedy Marr’s singular approach to life and love is more relevant than ever,” said Niven. “Getting the chance to develop the show with Yellow Bird UK, who share my passion for this character, feels ridiculously fortunate.”

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