A'Ziah King Wants Writing Credits for 'Zola'

A'Ziah King Wants Writing Credits for 'Zola'

by Myka Gayles-Greene

A’Ziah King, the inspiration behind 2020's A24 film Zola, isn't too pleased with the independent production company who turned her viral twitter thread into a film last summer.

Twitter's Saint of Storytellers, so to speak, and Executive Producer of 2020’s acclaimed Zola, was denied writer's credits and is calling out A24 for the apparent snub: “I think it's hilarious my intellect, trauma & talent is being overshadowed & hijaked. I AM the moment!” she expressed on Twitter.

This Sunday, King replied to Film Independent's 2022 Spirit Independent Awards nomination announcement contesting her exclusion from the writers category for Zola. Despite being a crucial creative mind behind the entire project, King says A24 failed to recognize her for providing much of the source material, tweeting, “I think it’s hilarious ZOLA is up for 7 awards & no one thought to invite me nor include me IN the writers award category...”

Making it perfectly clear that her grievances lie solely with the film's distribution company, in the same series of tweets, King extended gratitude towards her creative collaborators, writer Jeremy O. Harris and director Janicza Bravo, for their ability to transform her story into its finished product: “I am in awe of Janicza & Jeremy’s writing & directing. They deserve & have fought for me for YEARS.” she stated. Let’s be clear: my beef is with A24 exclusively.”

A24 has garnered a cult following amongst film enthusiasts as the distribution company behind Hereditary and nearly every mainstream arthouse film of the past decade (they gave us an unhinged Robert Pattinson character more than once). In 2018, it was announced that the company acquired the distribution rights to King’s iconic 2015 story explaining how King and "this b*tch here fell out," released via Twitter thread quickly gripping social media. The film’s 2020 release garnered acclaim for its visually striking direction and insightful commentary on sex work and social media, while propelling the careers of both Harris and Bravo, respectively.

King did finally receive tickets to the event, but who knows what would have been granted without her provocation and self-advocacy. A24 has not yet responded to the King’s claims.

Photo via Getty/ Rich Polk