Netflix will adapt best-selling memoir ‘Hillbilly Elegy’ into a movie after a fierce bidding war, and will reportedly spend $45 million on the film

  • After a bidding war, Netflix will finance the movie adaptation of the best-selling memoir “Hillbilly Elegy” and will spend $US45 million on the project, according to Deadline.
  • The movie will be directed and produced by Ron Howard.
  • According to the trade, not all of the $US45 million will go into the production of the movie, which may be a sign that the streaming giant is looking at the movie being another award-season favourite down the road, like “Roma.”

Netflix doesn’t seem to be letting its foot off the gas when it comes to providing subscribers Oscar bait.

On the heels of “Roma” garnering 10 Oscar nominations, Deadline reported on Friday that the streaming giant will spend $US45 million to make an adaptation of the best-selling memoir “Hillbilly Elegy.” This has the feel of another award-season contender for Netflix.

Ron Howard and Brian Grazer’s Imagine Entertainment obtained the film rights to the memoir in 2017, and Netflix has come out on top to finance it after a competitive bidding war. The $US45 million Netflix will pay to make the movie is almost double any other offer Imagine got, according to Deadline.

Howard, coming off directing “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” will direct and produce the movie, which has not been cast yet.


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“Hillbilly Elegy” is J.D. Vance’s 2016 memoir. The book looks back on his life growing up in the “Rust Belt” and examines the everyday struggles he faced growing up in his Appalachian working-class family, including drug addiction and economic challenges.

Deadline reported that the $US45 million Netflix is putting into the movie will not all go to production, which could mean that the company is looking to do a traditional theatrical award-season run like it did with “Roma.”

Netflix was not immediately available for comment.