Netflix and Leonardo DiCaprio are teaming up for a feature film adaptation of the documentary film “Virunga”. The Oscar-nominated documentary was written and directed by Orlando von Einsiedel and was released on the Netflix in 2014.
The film will follow forest rangers risking their lives and battling to save Congo’s most precious national park and its endangered mountain gorillas.
The documentary “Virunga” focused on the fight to protect the world’s last mountain gorillas in Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in Africa. Von Einsiedel spotlighted the biodiversity of Virunga, along with the political and economic issues arising from oil exploration and armed conflict in the region.
DiCaprio, who served as an executive producer on the documentary, is producing the film with his partners from Appian Way, Jennifer Davisson and Phillip Watson as well as Oscar-winner Joanna Natasegara for London-based Violet Films. Orlando von Einsiedel will serve as executive producer.
Barry Jenkins, who won an adapted screenplay Oscar with Tarell Alvin McCraney for “Moonlight,” will write the script for film adaptation of “Virunga.” Jenkins was also lauded for his adaptation of James Baldwin’s “If Beale Street Could Talk.” He also penned the screenplay to Rachel Morrison’s directorial debut, “Flint Strong” and has a series adaptation of Colson Whitehead’s bestselling novel "The Underground Railroad" forthcoming on Amazon.
Leonardo DiCaprio won an Academy Award for “The Revenant.” In addition to a prolific acting career, he produced “Robin Hood,” “Richard Jewell” and the 2016 documentary “The Ivory Game” about the poaching of elephants in Africa.
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