Deepa Mehta to Direct Adaptation of Avni Doshi’s Bestselling Novel ‘Burnt Sugar’ for Propagate Content

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Celebrated Indo-Canadian filmmaker Deepa Mehta (“Funny Boy,” “Water”) is attached to write and direct the film adaptation of Avni Doshi’s bestselling novel “Burnt Sugar.”

Set in the Indian city of Pune, the novel tells the story of Tara, who after a wild youth, faces challenges when she is older and must rekindle her relationship with her daughter.

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Ben Silverman’s Propagate Content has acquired audiovisual rights for the novel and will produce. The deal with Propagate was negotiated by Anna Soler-Pont at the Pontas Literary & Film Agency on behalf of Doshi.

Shortlisted for the 2020 Booker Prize, and longlisted for the 2021 Women’s Prize, the novel has sold over 150,000 copies worldwide. Translation rights have been sold into 26 languages, including German, French, Spanish, Korean, Russian and Arabic. The Lot Productions have licensed theater rights with an aim to develop a play to premiere in London during their 2023 season. The novel will be adapted by Carmen Nasr with cast and creative team to be announced.

“Depicting complicated human connections are what drive most of my projects and I look forward to delving into the complex, layered and at times surprisingly dark mother-daughter relationship that is so shockingly illustrated in this novel,” said Mehta.

“’Burnt Sugar’ is often sprinkled with razor sharp humor and its unexpected take on the old-as-time relationship left me gasping. It grabbed me from its first sentence and I couldn’t say yes fast enough when I was asked to bring the vision to the screen.”

Founded in 2015 by Silverman and Howard T. Owens, Propagate has offices in Los Angeles, New York and Paris. The company’s recent credits include “Rebelde Way” and “Untold” for Netflix, the Fox drama “Our Kind of People,” “Notre Dame: Our Lady of Paris” for ABC, “Go-Big Show” on TBS and the upcoming American adaptation of The Eurovision Song Contest.

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