The book recounts the years Venkatesh, a Columbia University professor, spent chronicling a crack-dealing gang in Chicago for a research project. He infiltrated one of Chicago's most notorious gangs the Black Kings and befriended them and their leader. Venkatesh found a close-knit group whose corporate culture was much like that of a successful legitimate business.
Venkatesh was given the job of calling the shots of the criminal enterprise for a day. Stephanie Allain, who teamed with Brewer on "Hustle&Flow" and "Black Snake Moan," will produce the movie.