Don Cheadle is preparing to bring us the story of Wall Street’s first black millionaire after the acquiring the film and TV rights to Shane White’s novel Prince of Darkness.
Cheadle is re-teaming with actor Steven Baigelman, who worked with him on the Miles Davis biopic Miles Ahead. Baigelman will reportedly pen the script and Cheadle will produce and topline.
Prince of Darkness: The Story of Jeremiah G. Hamilton, Wall Street’s First Black Millionaire shed light on the obscure story of Hamilton, who was mentioned in an obituary for Cornelius Vanderbilt as the tycoon’s true rival.
White’s book detailed the rise of Hamilton as he was chased out of Haiti to becoming a broker and land agent in 19th century New York, his success prickling both white and black society. He broke many taboos of the times, including marrying a white woman and owning stock in rail companies on whose trains wasn’t legally allowed to ride. When Hamilton died, obits at the time called him the richest black man in America.
The book has been awarded the Society of Historians of the Early American Republic’s best book prize, the 2016 New York City ‘best book’ prize, and the 2015 SHEAR best book citation.