Fox 2000's movie adaptation of Angie Thomas' 2017 novel, The Hate U Give, casts K.J. Apa (Riverdale) to replace the previously fired Kian Lawley. The Hate U Give joins the list of fellow young adult adaptations hitting screens in 2018. Twentieth Century Fox already released Love, Simon to glowing reviews from critics and casual moviegoers alike. Plus, Netflix recently made a deal to distribute To All the Boys I've Loved Before, the adaptation of Jenny Han's novel starring X-Men: Apocalypse's Lana Condor; the first trailer for The Darkest Minds previewed an exciting adaptation of Alexandra Bracken's book.
For its part, The Hate U Give wrapped filming in November 2017. However, videos of Kian Lawley making racist comments surfaced earlier this year and though the YouTube star apologized, Fox fired him from The Hate U Give. It was reported at the time that the studio planned to recast the role and reshoot Lawley's scenes in additional photography. Now, we know who will join the production - and it's a teen TV drama fan-favorite.
Deadline is reporting The Hate U Give has cast Riverdale star K.J. Apa for the role of Chris, the boyfriend of the film's lead. The production will begin a little more than a week of reshoots tomorrow, with Apa already in Atlanta, Georgia and on set to begin filming his role. Additionally, the young actor has dyed his hair brown, getting rid of the red hair that's synonymous with his Riverdale character, Archie Andrews. The Hate U Give has not yet been given a release date.
Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, Thomas' novel was critically well received and debuted at the top of The New York Times young adult best-seller list in February 2017. The Hunger Games' Amandla Stenberg stars in the adaptation as Starr Carter, a teenager who witnesses a police shooting and who must testify at the high-profile trial. The cast of The Hate U Give also features Regina Hall and Common as Starr's parents, Russell Hornsby as Starr's uncle, Lamar Johnson and TJ Wright as Starr's brothers, as well as Issa Rae, Anthony Mackie and Algee Smith. With a script from Audrey Wells, The Hate U Give is directed by George Tillman Jr.
Although The Hate U Give hasn't yet been given a release date, the project is a film many plan to keep an eye on. Fans of the book will no doubt hope the movie captures the spirit of Thomas' original story, while the subject of The Hate U Give will undoubtedly inspire a great deal of discussion and debate among audiences. As for Apa, his star is on the rise thanks to the success of The CW's Riverdale, which was recently renewed for season 3. He's also set to co-star in the ensemble romantic comedy The Last Summer. While it remains to be seen how The Hate U Give turns out, especially after replacing a supporting cast member, Apa is an up-and-coming actor who joins a talented cast and creative team, which bodes well for the project.