Ostar Productions acquires Terry McMillan’s A Day Late And A Dollar Short for Lifetime Television

Ostar Productions has acquired the television rights to Terry McMillan’s bestselling novel A DAY LATE AND A DOLLAR SHORT for Lifetime television.  Ostar Productions and Stephen Tolkin will serve as co-executive producers on the adaptation by Shernold Edwards.  Mr. Tolkin also directs the two hour movie special.

 Upon publication in 2001, Terry McMillan’s fifth novel, A DAY LATE AND A DOLLAR SHORT spent twelve weeks on the New York Times bestseller list, three of them at #1.  The novel also hit the bestseller lists of USA Today, Boston Globe, San Francisco Chronicle, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, and Chicago Tribune, among others.  There are nearly two million copies of A DAY LATE AND A DOLLAR SHORT in print.

Ostar Productions’ Bill Haber (Rizzoli & Isles, Moguls and Movie Stars; TNT’s Nightmares & Dreamscapes: From the Stories of Stephen King, Broadway’s The History Boys, Behanding in Spokane and Monty Python’s Spamalot) said, “Terry McMillan is an important voice with great stories to tell.  I am delighted to be working with Stephen Tolkin and Shernold Edwards on a television adaptation of this great novel.”

Director and co-executive producer Stephen Tolkin was a writer and an executive producer of Brothers & Sisters, Legend of the Seeker and Summerland.

A DAY LATE AND A DOLLAR SHORT scriptwriter Shernold Edwards was a producer and writer on The Listener and ‘Da Kink in My Hair, and a writer on Shattered and Instant Star.  She was also the Executive in Charge of Creative on Degrassi: The Next Generation.

Terry McMillan’s fifth novel,  A DAY LATE AND A DOLLAR SHORT,  introduces the Price family matriarch Viola, her sometimes-husband Cecil, and their four adult kids (Paris, Lewis, Charlotte, and Janelle) each of whom sees life – and one another – through thick and thin, and entirely on their own terms.

Terry McMillan studied journalism at UC Berkeley and screenwriting at Columbia before making her fiction debut with Mama, which won both the Doubleday New Voices in Fiction Award and the American Book Award. She is also the author of bestselling novels Disappearing Acts, Waiting to Exhale, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, A Day Late and a Dollar Short, and The Interruption of Everything.

The 1992 release of Waiting To Exhale, her third novel, was a watershed moment in African-American literary history. The Washington Post praised her for refusing to “perpetuate the well-worn conventions of black women’s writing.”

The Wall Street Journal called the book a “landmark” that “ignited the market for books aimed at black audiences.”

The New York Times heralded it as “a wakeup call to publishers.”

The timely questions that Waiting To Exhale raised about class, race, and culture touched a national nerve, and the film adaptation grossed over $70 million at the domestic box office.


“Terry McMillan is perhaps the finest chronicler of modern life among African-American men and women.”

San Francisco Chronicle

“A moving tapestry of familial love and redemption, A DAY LATE AND A DOLLAR SHORT is a glorious novel that transported me into Terry McMillan’s fictional world and, like the best fiction, helped illuminate the corners of my own heart. [It] dared me not to laugh, cry, and shout upon recognizing this glittering, complicated portrayal of African-American life…Terry McMillan gets it right and does it well…Without question, this is McMillan’s best…Not a day late or a dollar short, but right on time and rich in love.”

The Washington Post

“Undoubtedly, McMillan’s finest novel to date…McMillan [is] in top form as she weaves together, through the story of the dysfunctional Price family, a poignant yet hilarious narrative that deepens and extends the themes of love, loss and family only touched upon in her earlier work…McMillan’s work is too often dismissed as ‘breezy,’ as if colloquial narrative is incompatible with craft or skill. Yet beneath the one-liners and cut-to-the-chase zingers, A DAY LATE AND A DOLLAR SHORT is a marvel of carefully constructed misinformation, revelation and dramatic conflict that look much easier to duplicate than they actually are. All told, they add up to a triumph for McMillan and a rich reward for her fans, of which there should be a growing number for this affecting and life-affirming read.”

Los Angeles Times

“Terry McMillan’s best book yet. She has a true comic gift. Funny, finely crafted, profound…contemporary African-American naturalism at its best.”

The Village Voice

“Fans who’ve waited anxiously for their next ‘Terry fix’ will not be disappointed…McMillan offers a valentine to the power and beauty of Black families and the indestructible bond that holds us together.”


“Touching and funny.”


“McMillan in top form . . . moving and memorable.”

The New York Times

“It’s oh-so-good. By the last pages you’re weeping. You’re laughing. You’re hooked.”

Chicago Tribune

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