Warner Bros. Animation and award-winning writer/director/producer Ava DuVernay announced today that they are developing a "high-end serialized animated family television series" based on the #1 New York Times and USA Today best-selling young adult book series Wings of Fire, from author Tui T. Sutherland. Warner Bros. Animation said in a statement that they had "secured the exclusive rights to the sought-after publishing phenomenon for DuVernay in a highly competitive situation with multiple parties bidding for the middle grade fantasy book series, which thus far has spawned 15 novels, three graphic novels and four short stories." DuVernay has an overall deal with Warner Bros.
In addition to Wings of Fire and the planned adapation of the DC/Vertigo series DMZ, DuVernay is working with comic book writer Tom King on a film adaptation of the classic DC characters The New Gods. Part of Jack Kirby's Fourth World Saga, the New Gods are larger-than-life, mythological figures living on separate planets in space and warring for all of time between good and evil. King and artist Mitch Gerads most recently brought their world to life in Mister Miracle, 12-issue limited-run series for DC which won a bunch of Eisner Awards.
Warner Bros. Animation is producing the Wings of Fire project with DuVernay, who serves as executive producer, through her ARRAY Filmworks production company. Dan Milano (Glitch Techs), Christa Starr, Tui T. Sutherland and Warner Bros. Animation's Sam Register (Teen Tians Go!) are also on board as executive producers.
With more than nine million copies in print, and available in 16 languages, the Wings of Fire book series is an epic adventure set in a world entirely ruled by dragons. Across two continents and 10 tribes, the series explores vicious wars, enduring friendships, and heroic quests that span generations of fascinating dragon characters.
This marks the first animated project for DuVernay as part of her exclusive overall deal with the Warner Bros. Television Group. For WBTVG, DuVernay is currently producing the OWN/Warner Horizon Scripted Television series Queen Sugar and Cherish the Day, as well as the HBO Max/Warner Bros. Television pilot DMZ, based on characters from DC.
DuVernay's success with Selma and her TV projects has made her one of those people who ends up on every shortlist for big projects. She finally got her crack at a blockbuster with Disney's A Wrinkle in Time in 2018, which was a commercial and critical disappointment but for which she set a number of records, since women of color traditionally do not have opportunities of that magnitude in Hollywood.