It all began when a grandma accidentally invited a stranger to join them for Thanksgiving. Now, they spend the holiday together every year.
For the last six Thanksgivings, Wanda Dench and Jamal Hinton have shared the holiday together every year, despite never meeting before Hinton first received an invite in 2016.
Dench had accidentally sent Hinton an invite to Thanksgiving dinner at her home in Arizona believing his number to be her grandson’s. Confused, Hinton asked Dench to provide a photo of herself to verify she was his grandmother.
Upon replying with his own photo, Hinton told Dench, “You not my grandma”. However, Hinton then joked if he could still get a plate at her Thanksgiving dinner, despite no relation between them.
Obliging, Dench replied, “Of course you can. That’s what grandmas do…Feed everyone”.
With the story going viral in 2016, Hinton and Dench have since spent every Thanksgiving dinner together since, marking a new tradition between them for the holiday.
Dench has also extended the invitation to Hinton’s girlfriend and family in past years. In April of 2020, her husband, Lonnie Dench, who also participated in the Thanksgiving tradition with his wife, died from COVID-19 complications.
Now, with recurring social media interest into the story every year Thanksgiving rolls around, Netflix plans to capitalise on the viral enthusiasm and turn it into a holiday film, titled The Thanksgiving Text, according to Variety.
Abdul Williams is attached to write the screenplay. Producers include Robert Teitel and George Tillman, Jr. for State Street Pictures. Lawrence Mott will serve as an executive producer.
Hinton shared the news on Twitter, thanking the followers of his and Dench’s journey through the last six years.
Additionally, in a joint statement the pair said:
“We are excited to share our story with the world. We hope it inspires more people to reach out and make connections that they wouldn’t ordinarily make.
“We are so blessed to find a genuine friendship brought together by God from a mistaken text message.”
Netflix has yet to confirm a release date for the film, but it’ll certainly be worthy viewing for Dench and Hinton at their seventh Thanksgiving encounter next year.