Gangs of London producer, Pulse Films, has optioned the rights to adapt Moses McKenzie’s debut novel An Olive Grove in Ends.

The novel will be published by Little, Brown in May, with UK publisher Wildfire releasing the novel in April.

Author McKenzie was just named by The Observer as one of the ’10 best debut novelists of 2022.’

The story will be adapted for the small screen by the Pulse Films team who just completed the second season of BAFTA-nominated Gangs of London.  Abigail Dennis, Senior Development Producer, and Jamie Hall, COO – Scripted, brokered the deal for An Olive Grove in Ends with Anne-Marie Doulton of The Ampersand Agency.  McKenzie will adapt his own novel for television.

An Olive Grove in Ends is the coming-of-age tale of Sayon Hughes, a young Black man from Bristol, who dreams of a world far removed from the one in which he was raised. Set within a richly drawn Jamaican-Somali community, it follows the turbulent, often painful childhood and youth of Sayon, who tries to keep his crimes secret from the pastor’s daughter he’s in love with. Growing up, Sayon found respite from the chaos of his environment in the love and loyalty of his brother-in-arms, Cuba, and of his girl, Shona, whose own sense of purpose galvanises Sayon’s. But soon Sayon finds his loyalties torn and his dream of a better life in peril. Is it possible to break free of the bookies’ tickets, the burnt spoons, and the crooked solutions, and still keep the love of his life?

Abigail Dennis, Senior Development Producer at Pulse Films, said: “We are thrilled to have secured the rights to Moses McKenzie’s highly sought-after debut novel. I immediately fell in love with Moses’ lyrical, sophisticated, and authentic storytelling. Moses is an extraordinary, once-in-a-generation talent who I’m confident has a prolific career ahead of him.”

Moses McKenzie said: “From the first conversations with the Pulse team my agent and I knew we’d found people who understood what I’m aiming to achieve with this story, and who have the creative flair and determination to develop an outstanding tv adaptation. I want to create something beautiful, something that will be beautiful now and in fifty years’ time.”

Thomas Benski, Pulse Films CEO, said: “Moses McKenzie is an exceptional new and exciting talent, and we can’t wait to bring this unique and compelling story to global audiences. He is the perfect example of the up-and-coming, stand-out writing talent we search out. We are committed to championing new and diverse talent in the industry and feel incredibly proud to be at Moses’ side at the start of his career.”

Moses McKenzie is repped by The Ampersand Agency in the UK.

Jon Creamer

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