Despite news earlier this year that seemed to indicate smooth sailing for the series, the TV adaptation of Anne Rice's The Vampire Chronicles is no longer in development at Hulu. As a result, Variety reports that Rice and her team are now taking the property back to market. What makes this news more interesting than usual TV rights options is that Rice is offering to sell the film and TV rights to her Vampire Chronicles books completely, meaning whoever decides to pay up will own the film and TV rights to the novels forever and not as an expirable option. The new bundle also includes rights to Rice's “The Mayfair Witches,” another series by the author that has crossed over with "Vampire" in Rice's novels. The film rights to that series are currently owned by Warner Bros.
No reason was given for why the TV series is no longer being developed at Hulu, just that the streamer has elected to pass on the series. There's a hefty price tag for the rights to The Vampire Chronicles though, with the trade citing sources who claim an asking price between $30 million and $40 million, a deal that could perhaps be very fruitful for a studio willing to take their chances and invest longterm in the property.
The journey of The Vampire Chronicles onto television has been long and full of bumps in the road. Hannibal showrunner Bryan Fuller was previously attached to it at one point before departing. Hulu picked up the series for development last year with new showrunner Dee Johnson announced in February. Now with the series not moving forward at Hulu and a new home being sought away it remains to be seen who involved will remain on the project should it ever rise from the grave.
Earlier this month, the official Facebook page for The Vampire Chronicles (run by Rice and her son Christopher) posted an update about the series which in hindsight is quite cryptic about its future. Announcements about the series have frequently been shared on the page, with the pair once again teasing news on the horizon.
"We realize it's been some time since we've given you an update," the post reads. "Please allow me to assure you that magnificently exciting things are happening behind the scenes and we are dyyyyyyyyyying (sic)to talk to you about them. But in this particular moment, we are sworn to secrecy. The minute, and I assure you, the MINUTE, we are free to discuss the latest developments, many of them the most exciting since we began work on this, we will do so, and we will do so here. This page is not dead. Like Lestat, this project will live forever. We know you thirst, and we, Lestat and all the others who share the dark gift shall satisfy that thirst very soon."
Given this week's news on the series, it's quite unclear what could be happening behind the scenes for The Vampire Chronicles, but check back here for more details as we learn them.