According to the Hollywood Reporter, Ezra Claytan Daniels’ graphic novel Upgrade Soul has been optioned by Aperture Entertainment and Adam Goldworm, producer of the film adaptation of Derf Backderf’s My Friend Dahmer.
The graphic novel, due out Tuesday in bookstores, is described as a David Cronenberg-esque fairytale of wish fulfillment wherein an elderly African-American couple participate in an experimental rejuvenation procedure and unexpectedly find themselves faced with severely disfigured but intellectually superior clones of themselves. In answering the question of what kind of experience would it be — fulfilling or horrifying — if you could meet your better self, it becomes dreadfully clear that only one version of each can survive.
The book has had a long development cycle, beginning as early as 2001. The first half of Upgrade Soul was serialized on the Apple Store beginning in 2011 in collaboration with Erik Loyer’s Opertoon, and the full story was self-published in three volumes through Radiator Comics in 2017. It led to Ezra Claytan Daniels winning the Dwayne McDuffie Award For Diversity in 2017. A new single volume edition published by Lion Forge hit comic shops on September 5, with digital and bookstore editions coming next week. [Disclaimer: Lion Forge own The Beat via its sister company Syndicated Comics.]
Mild-mannered UI/UX designer by day and freelance writer/artist by night, nothing can stop Kate Willaert in her quest to analyze everything in geek culture. She also writes about video game history for GameHistory.org.