The highly acclaimed memoir of Washington lobbyist K. Riva Levinson has been optioned for a film deal. The book tells the story of Riva’s remarkable career, crisscrossing five continents, and the circumstances that led her in 1997 to join forces with Ellen Johnson Sirleaf who was beginning a decade-long struggle to become President of Liberia.
“I have been privileged to witness from front lines, some of the most momentous events in modern history,” says Levinson. “I am heartened by the feedback my memoir has received, and thrilled that it may now become a feature film. I hope it will inspire others to seek out the heroes in their own lives.”
Joey Tufaro, co-chairman of Gold Star Films, producer of Kidnap and Maggie, has optioned the story rights to Washington lobbyist K. Riva Levinson’s memoir, CHOOSING THE HERO: My Improbable Journey and the Rise of Africa’s First Woman President (Kiwai Media, June 2016).
“At its heart, this is a story of heroism and perseverance in the pursuit of a life with purpose,” says Tufaro. “It’s a story about two women warriors who were able to change the fate of a country and its people because of their courage and determination. It will be an incredible film.”
With an uncanny eye for detail and nuance, Levinson provides a poignant, account of how she helped Sirleaf overcame enormous odds to achieve her goal. She chronicles her behind-the-scenes lobbying in the U.S. for Sirleaf as well as her on-the-ground efforts supporting the presidential campaign in Liberia. It took three tries for Sirleaf to finally win the presidency in November 2005. In doing so, she became the first woman democratically elected to lead an African nation and was awarded the Noble Peace prize in 2011.
Levinson says the response to the book, particularly African women, has been nothing short of phenomenal. Levinson shared one of the most recent emails.
“As a young African woman it is the most inspiring one I have ever read,” writes reader named Zina from the country of Chad.
During an event for CHOOSING THE HERO in New York City last month, Joey Tufaro says he witnessed for the first time the special bond that Levinson and President Sirleaf share as they discussed their work together.
“It was amazing,” explains Tufaro. “I was in awe as I heard the conviction in Riva’s voice as she spoke about her belief in President Sirleaf, and then listened as the Liberian President respond, ‘You know, sometimes two people just click.’ President Sirleaf is an inspiration to all who strive to make a difference. Her goal of transforming her war-ravaged country into a democracy is one of this generations’ great success stories.”
Gold Star Films recently wrapped a comic con based comedy, Supercon, staring John Malkovich, Maggie Grace and Mike Epps. In addition, Joey Tufaro is producing the much-anticipated theatrical release of the action thriller, Kidnap, staring Halle Berry which will be in theaters in the spring 2017
The CHOOSING THE HERO film project is being sold by Yarek Danielak’s, Arsenal Pictures with WME’s Stuart Manashil packaging the project for distribution.
For Riva Levinson:
Jane Wesman Public Relations
For Goldstar Films:
Glenn Selig The Publicity Agency
Phone: (310) 598-3367 x7777
SOURCE: Gold Star Films
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