Chimamanda Adichie’s ‘Americanah’ Film Adaptation: Danai Gurira Reveals Why She Was Chosen To Take Lead Role

As you’ve probably heard about half a decade ago, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s award-winning novel, Americanah is being made into a mini-series.

The film is being produced by Oscar-winning actress, Lupita Nyong’o who is starring alongside Tony-nominated actress and playwright, Danai Gurira.

Having visited Nigeria, Nsukka with Adichie herself, to really understand the novel and the setting, Danai Gurira has opened up about how she is unique to play the protagonist character Ifemelu.

In a recent interview with Net-A-Porter, Gurira cleared the doubt of some Adichie’s fans who feel the Zimbabwean descent is unfit to play the character of Ifemelu.

“Funnily, I and Chimamanda have these interesting parallels. We were both raised by academics, either near or on an African university campus,” Gurira said.

“We saw our countries go through various things when we were growing up. And we came back to America for school. Lupita, too,” she added.

Gurira did not only share her similarity with Adichie’s upbringing but also revealed the connection she has with Ifemelu’s character, the book’s protagonist.

The novel, Americanah is a complicated love story of two Nigerian immigrants, Ifemelu and Obinze and just like Ifemelu in the novel, Gurira was a young lady who found herself switching between Zimbabwe and America and yet struggling with her identity.

Speaking about how she saw herself then and how she sees herself now, she concluded:

“When I moved to Africa as a girl, I thought I was American. Then when I came back, I realized how African I was. I am definitely a strong meshing of both worlds”

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