Children of Blood and Bone arrived in 2018 as a refreshing YA fantasy offering that eschews the genre’s obligatory array of sexy monsters and post-apocalypstic scenarios, centering itself in the arena of African mysticism, focused exclusively on African characters. With the novel’s 25-year-old Nigerian-American author, Tomi Adeyemi, already set to release a sequel novel this December [aggressive glances at George R.R. Martin], the inevitable call from Hollywood has been made, and a film adaptation is coming!
Deadline just reported that the project, which had previously been moving forward as a Fox 2000 property, post-merger is now poised to be spearheaded by Lucasfilm. According to the outlets sources, “the project caught the fancy of Lucasfilm and that its chief Kathy Kennedy is in the process of making this the first feature property to be produced by Lucasfilm since the Disney acquisition that isn’t Star Wars or Indiana Jones.”
The article further reports that This Is Us writer Kay Oyegun is in the process of making a deal to work on the script. Previously, David Magee, known from screenplays like Mary Poppins Returns, Life of Pi, Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day and Finding Neverland, was set to adapt the book into a screenplay.
Rick Famuyiwa is still attached to direct, having previously signed onto the Children of Blood and Bone adaptation for Fox 2000, as reported by THR. Famuyiwa achieved recent acclaim with his critically-praised 2015 coming-of-age drama, Dope, with dramatic experience from HBO TV movie Confirmation and theatrical films Our Family Wedding, Brown Sugar and The Wood. He has since been on the radar for several high-profile projects, famously attached to direct Warner’s Ezra-Miller-fronted DC franchise movie, The Flash, until dropping out over creative differences. Last year saw him eyed to direct graphic novel adaptation Black Hole and produce Disney African Princess picture Sadé; prospects that seemingly fizzled after he signed up to direct episodes of Disney’s upcoming Star Wars spinoff TV series, The Mandalorian.
Famuyiwa, via his Verse shingle, will also serve as a producer for the Children of Blood and Bone film adaptation, joined in that capacity by Marty Bowen, Isaac Klausner and John Fischer of Temple Hill (the studio behind First Man and the Maze Runner movies), as well as Sunswept Entertainment’s Karen Rosenfelt. Additionally, Scott Falconer is onboard as associate producer.
Children of Blood and Bone takes place in the land of Orisha, an African-inspired realm that was permeating with magic and wonder until a cruel king, named Saran, massacred the land’s magic users, known as maji; an act that separated the realm’s connection to the ether of magic. The story centers on 17-year-old Zelie Adebola, who saw the genocidal act, which also claimed the life of her maji mother. Living an oppressive existence in exile in a small village, Zelie – joined by a rebelling princess, named Amari – embarks on a journey to restore magic; an endeavor that will involve discovering her own magical powers and waging a resistance against overwhelming forces. She will be pit opposite (Amari’s older brother) Prince Inan, a point-of-view character whose own good nature creates a personal conflict with his side, yielding an intriguing bit of nuance to the story.
We will keep you updated on the Children of Blood and Bone movie as the news arrives!